I have been putting off seeing the dentist again. I’ve only been once since my diagnosis last year, to get an xray and to have my teeth cleaned and also to educate and update my dentist and his staff about mast cell disease. They quickly read up on it and learned what to do and what not to do with me as a patient with MCAS.
I felt lucky that they were willing to treat me after learning about mast cell disease and all the risks we face as patients, to be honest.
While I was there I learned I have two tiny (well, they were tiny last year) cavities and, of course, my mast cells performed on cue and we all got to see my on-and-off gingivitis in action. Every time they barely touched my gums they started swelling and bleeding. It’s partly why I avoid going to the dentist — it hurts and it triggers an avalanche of mast cell degranulation symptoms everywhere else which can leave me sick for days afterward.
Not to mention that it costs me more because they charge more to clean your teeth when your gums are so inflamed.
Not to mention, too, that I hated going because they used to give me a hard time about not taking care of my teeth. When I was doing the best I could.
I can’t blame them for thinking I’m a slacker. For my entire life I’ve had bad teeth and issues with my gums. It’s a curse that runs in my maternal side of the family, interestingly enough, that’s the side I think MCAS runs through. My grandma and my mom, who I believe both had MCAS, and my older brother who is extremely ill (with suspected mast cell disease) all had their teeth removed and wore dentures starting when they were just in their 40’s.
Yikes!! I am now in my 40’s!
It’s been one of my biggest fears, of course. I love my teeth, or at least I want to. I take as good of care of them as I can but I still struggle.
I’m not alone, either. Dr Afrin says:
…many MCAD patients suffer deterioration of the teeth for mysterious reasons despite good attention to dental hygiene.. some MCAD patients also suffer gum deterioration.
When I was young I had almost a dozen cavities filled with metal fillings. My teeth would just crumble no matter how much I brushed them and in time the metal fillings began to crack and break off in pieces.
A few years ago I had all my metal fillings removed and replaced with the the white ones but I still get a lot of cavities. I also have bone loss and gum deterioration. I’m not giving up yet, though. I am trying to hold onto my original teeth for as long as possible.
I only use natural toothpaste and floss gently. Lately I’ve been thinking of trying to make a cromolyn sodium mouthwash for swishing around in my mouth when my gums are really bad. It would be interesting to see if it would help since Nasalcrom works like magic to calm the inflammation down in my sinuses and throat. Gastrocrom works wonders to keep the inflammation in my intestinal tract down, so why not a mouthwash? It may even help me better deal with the mucus attacks I get, which I’ll write about soon.
Like I said, I am not giving up. I will fight back with everything I’ve got. I’ve already given up so much to this disease. I’m not giving my teeth up to it.