Tag Archives: leukemia

Leukemia and oral health

What is leukemia?

Leukemia is a malignant cancer of the blood in which one’s bone marrow produces white blood cells in excess in association with gene mutations.

leukemia: white blood cells (dark purple) produced in excess

Causes of leukemia

Genetic predisposition (family history, people with Down syndrome have higher tendency to get leukemia)

Artificial ionizing radiation

Chemicals (eg benzene and other petrochemicals)

Viruses, e.g. HIV (Human Immunodeficiency virus  or HTLV-1 (human T-lymphotropic virus) Continue reading

Dental management of leukemia patients


What is leukemia?

Leukemia is a type of blood cancer whereby there is an abnormal increase of immature/ primitive white blood cells. White blood cells function by producing antibodies to fight off infection from our body.  Leukemia patients are more prone to infections as their abnormal white blood cells cannot produce antibodies. Continue reading

Oral Health: Relationship between the body and mouth II

Continue from section I

Is there a way to link oral signs and symptoms to certain diseases?

In some diseases, there can be very specific oral health presentations or manifestations. In fact, there are times where the mouth is the first site to show signs of an underlying systemic condition, preceding clinical diagnosis by months. Hence it is important that if you noticed any sudden changes in your mouth that cannot be relate back or correspond to a known cause, it may be wise to monitor those changes. If the abnormal changes persist for weeks or become symptomatic, it is best to get it checked out by a dentist as soon as possible to prevent late diagnosis and complications.

Below is an outline of possible oral health problems or presentations under some of the common conditions or diseases of the body: Continue reading

Oral Health: Relationship between the body and mouth I

diagram of a human digestive system

Relationship of the mouth to the body

As stressed in previous articles, oral health can influence our general health and vice verse. In fact, some changes in our general health are often reflected in the oral cavity and at times, can even precede clinical diagnosis of the systemic condition.

What are the common body changes that affect our oral health?

Hormonal changes in the body can often be a source of drastic oral health changes despite patients having fairly good oral hygiene. A hormone imbalance in the body, such which occurs during pregnancy or puberty spurt, can modify behaviors of cells in our body, in particular our immune system. Continue reading

Oral health Pt 1: Why is it so important?

Diagram of the palatine tonsils from U.S. Nati...

Structures of the oral cavity

Oral health is defined as the health of all oral structures and while the usual focus lies on teeth, it is important to not neglect other oral structures such as the lips, tongue, inside lining of the mouth, roof of mouth or palate, soft palate, throat, and tonsils. Periodontal health should also be taken into consideration, as they are the supporting structures of the teeth which is crucial for adequate retention of teeth. All these play an important role in the functioning of the mouth hence need to be maintained at a satisfactory level in order to prevent problems. Continue reading