Your body is a complex system with various components working together to keep it performing at its optimum best. The parathyroid hormone (PTH) helps maintain calcium and phosphorus metabolism. It has an important role in bone and teeth mineralization. But what happens if the parathyroid gland isn't working properly? Various conditions point to problems with the PTH, like hypercalcemia. Learn more about hypercalcemia, its effects on your oral health, and treatment options.
Hypercalcemia Teeth: What It Is & Treatment Options
Hypercalcemia is a condition marked by increased levels of calcium in the blood. The parathyroid gland regulates the calcium levels in your body by releasing parathyroid hormones (PTH). Issues with the parathyroid gland can cause an excessive release of the parathyroid hormone, also known as hyperparathyroidism (HPT). There are three types of hyperparathyroidism: primary, secondary, and tertiary. Primary hyperparathyroidism (PHPT) and cancer are the most common causes of hypercalcemia, accounting for over 80-90% of cases.
How does hypercalcemia affect your oral health? Calcium is one of the things your body needs to build strong, healthy teeth and bones. It also builds and maintains your jawbone, helping to create a solid anchor for your teeth. So what happens if you have too much calcium in the teeth? There are mild to severe oral symptoms that your dentist is specially trained to detect and treat. People with varying types of hyperparathyroidism and hypercalcemia may experience:
- Soft tissue calcifications
- Tooth sensitivity when biting and chewing
- Slight jaw pain
Your doctor will recommend a treatment option based on the severity and cause of the condition. According to the Cleveland Clinic, your doctor may suggest the following to moderate your calcium levels
- Drink more water: This will help flush out the excess calcium.
- Avoid calcium supplements.
- Avoid calcium-rich antacid tablets.
To ensure that your overall health is taken care of, your doctor will monitor and treat the underlying causes of hypercalcemia too.
A hormonal imbalance and some cancer and cancer treatments may lead to hypercalcemia. Fortunately, your dentist can detect and effectively treat oral issues due to these conditions. Talk to your doctor and dentist if you are experiencing discomfort in your teeth when chewing, pain in the jaw, or any other dental problems. They can help you take good care of your oral health while undergoing treatment.
This article is intended to promote understanding of and knowledge about general oral health topics. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your dentist or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment.