Holistic Vigilantes & the Conflict of Chronic Disease

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The Vigilantes have teamed up with the hero of anti-aging, Dr. Douglas Lord of NAVA Health & Vitality Center, to explain the importance of hormonal health for men and women and its intricate connection to whole-body health and chronic disease. No question goes unanswered in this cutting-edge episode of Holistic Vigilantes, as Dr. Lord discusses the importance of Bioidentical Hormones, IV Therapy, Peptide Therapy, Adrenal Therapy, Thyroid Therapy, and Equiscope Therapy. There’s a new day dawning in the fight against chronic disease.

To learn more about Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy (and more), check out the latest episode of the Holistic Vigilantes Podcast, featuring Dr. Douglas Lord of the Nava Health and Vitality Center.

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Everyone knows what hormones are, but most have little idea of what hormones do within our bodies, or how they affect our health – even oral health. However, these tiny things are a powerful component of the body. That’s right, these little chemical messengers play a huge role in physical, mental, oral, and emotional health, and control many vital functions of the body. Hormones are part of the endocrine system and are secreted by a large network of glands. When these glands are functioning normally, they produce the proper mix and amounts of hormones to support healthy body function. On the flip side, when the endocrine glands produce too much or too little of a hormone, the system becomes imbalanced, and can impact internal processes like metabolism, body temperature, and reproduction.

Hormone imbalances often begin during middle-age in both men and women, as this is when a natural hormone shift typically occurs. Internal hormone changes can react differently in each individual’s body, showing up with varying signs and symptoms. These symptoms can be extremely subtle and are often misdiagnosed or confused with other ailments. Symptoms tend to multiply as time goes on, becoming more obvious.

Common Symptoms of Hormone Imbalance May Include:

  • Night Sweats
  • Hot Flashes
  • Decrease in Muscle Mass
  • Heavy and/or Painful Menstrual Cycles
  • Weight Gain
  • Fatigue
  • Insomnia
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Mood Swings
  • Irritability
  • Brain Fog
  • Difficulty Concentrating
  • Decreased Energy Levels
  • Decreased Libido or Sex Drive

Hormone imbalance can be caused by many reasons – the most common being the natural aging process. The body is a very complex organism that requires an intricate balance to keep things functioning properly. One small change can easily tip the scale. Another common cause of hormone imbalance is stress. When the body experiences stress, it releases the stress hormone Cortisol. When released in large amounts, Cortisol can have a negative impact on hormone levels. Many common diseases can also play a role in hormone imbalance, including hypothyroidism, hyperthyroidism, thyroiditis, and diabetes. These diseases are often caused by hormone imbalance, but as the disease progresses, the hormone imbalance worsens.

For women, there is an increased risk of tooth decay, gum disease, and other dental problems related to hormone balance. During different stages of life, women are more susceptible to oral health problems due to hormone fluctuations. The female hormones estrogen and progesterone create more blood flow to the gums, causing them to become more sensitive to irritants. The mouth has an intricate balance of bacteria and when hormone levels are high, women often become more sensitive to the presence of plaque and other bacteria. This increased sensitivity can cause gum inflammation, swelling, and bleeding. When left untreated, it can lead to more severe dental problems like bone and tooth loss.

Here are 5 times in life where it is important for women to pay close attention to teeth and gums:

  • Puberty – The surge of progesterone and estrogen during puberty makes the gums exceptionally vulnerable to inflammation and gingivitis caused by the bacteria in plaque.
  • Menstrual Cycles – Monthly hormone production surrounding the menstrual cycle can cause swollen, bleeding gums, canker sores, and swollen salivary glands.
  • Using Birth Control – These drugs prevent pregnancy but increase the risk for gum issues, due to the boost in estrogen and progesterone. Note: smoking while taking birth control causes increased risk of dry socket after tooth extraction.
  • Pregnancy – The fluctuation of hormones during pregnancy results in a greater risk of gingivitis, so common that the term “pregnancy gingivitis” exists to describe just that. It is common that your dentist may recommend more frequent dental cleaning during pregnancy to avoid more serious issues like periodontal disease.
  • Menopause – The sudden drop in female hormones during menopause causes sever dry mouth. Without the protection of saliva to help in neutralizing acid, moisten, and cleanse the mouth, women face a heightened risk of tooth decay and gum disease. The decrease in hormones also puts women at risk for loss of bone density, which can lead to gum recession and tooth loss.

Oral health is the key to overall health, and any inflammation in the mouth can lead to other serious health issues. Hormones are a part of life, but gum disease does not have to be. Gum disease is preventable and reversible in the early stages, so it is important to catch it sooner than later. Regular brushing and flossing is great for prevention when combined with regular visits to the dentist.

Achieving hormone balance can improve your quality of life and overall health. People have been turning to hormone replacement therapy for decades. In more recent years, bioidentical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT) has gotten a lot of attention. BHRT is an effective way to treat men and women for hormone imbalances. Bioidentical Hormones are manmade hormones derived from natural plant estrogens, meaning that your body can use the hormones effectively, while leading to fewer side effects because they act like the body’s naturally produced hormones. If you are experiencing symptoms of hormone imbalance, it is best to have testing done by a qualified professional to determine your hormone levels and create an individualized plan of treatment.

Thank you for being a valued member of our dental family. Please give us a call if you have any questions or if we can be of any assistance whatsoever.

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