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National Women's Health Week: Healthy Smiles at Every Age

May 11, 2015

It’s National Women’s Health Week and a great time for women to take control of their oral and overall health. 

There are 5 life stages when a woman’s smile needs special attention.  Let’s take a look. 

Pre-Teen and Teens 

Puberty:   Hormonal changes during puberty and before your period can cause the small blood vessels in your gums to dilate, which may cause bleeding and swelling. The bacteria in your mouth can also shift from healthy to infectious as your hormone levels increase. These can lead to gum disease, cavities, canker sores and bad breath. 

Smile Solution:  Stop sensitive gums before they become a big problem.  See your dentist if they bother you. 


The Pill:  Estrogen in birth control pills mimics pregnancy cycles within the body. If you take the pill, you may experience similar oral side effects as women who are actually pregnant.  These include sensitive gums and sometimes gum disease (gingivitis).  

Smile Solution:  Tell your dentist if you’re on birth control.  It tells them to be on the lookout for certain problems and helps them plan treatments. 

20s & 30s 

Pregnancy:  Morning sickness is probably the most unpleasant side effect of pregnancy.  Regularly vomiting can cause severe enamel erosion and lead to an unhealthy smile. 

Smile Solution:  After you’ve been sick, rinse with water or mouthwash and then wait 30 minutes to brush.  Brushing too soon can cause even more damage. 

40s & 50s 

Menopause:  Reduced estrogen levels put you at greater risk for osteoporosis and periodontitis, a serious gum infection that destroys the bone that supports your teeth.  Periodontitis can lead to tooth loss. 

Smile Solution:  Keep your teeth and smile healthy by maintaining a good smile care routine and keeping regular dental check-ups.  Prevention is the key. 

60s & Beyond 

Post-menopause:  As if the pain and hassle of menopause wasn’t enough to deal with, you’re now at a greater risk for developing dry mouth.  Dry mouth is a common side effect of reduced estrogen levels and many medications.  It can also lead to periodontitis. 

Smile Solution:  Talk to your dentist if you’re experiencing dry mouth.  They’ll help you find the right oral care products to treat it before it becomes a big problem.