Millions of people take bisphosphonate drugs to prevent bone loss, but do they know the risks. These medications are commonly used to treat osteoporosis, but can also cause pain, and specifically a condition called Bisphosphonate Induced Osteonecrosis of the Jaw (BIONJ). People who take a bisphosphonate need to know what BIONJ is, which drugs are most likely to cause it, who is at risk, and what to do about these risks.
What is Bisphosphonate Induced Osteonecrosis of the Bone (BIONJ)? Osteonecrosis of the bone is defined as the "presence of exposed bone in the maxillofacial (jaw) region that does not heal within 8 weeks after identification by a health care provider" according to the American Society of Bone and Mineral Research. This particular type of osteonecrosis is caused by the bisphosphonate drugs, hence the name "Bisphosphonate Induced". The common symptoms include jaw pain, swelling, infection, loosening of the teeth and drainage. Of course, seeing bone is defi...
TMD; Temporomandibular joint disorders; Temporomandibular muscle disorders
Symptoms associated with TMJ disorders may be:
Biting or chewing difficulty or discomfort
Clicking, popping, or grating sound when opening or closing the mouth
Dull, aching pain in the face
Jaw pain or tenderness of the jaw
Reduced ability to open or close the mouth
Signs and tests
You may need to see more than one medical specialist for your TMJ pain and symptoms, such as your primary care provider, a dentist, or an ear, nose, and throat (ENT) doctor, depending on your symptoms.
A thorough examination may involve:
A dental examination to show if you have poor bite alignment
Feeling the joint and connecting muscles for tenderness
Pressing around the head for areas that are sensitive or painful
Sliding the teeth from side to side
Watching, feeling, and...
Alternative Names Swollen gums; Gingival swelling Home Care Improve your nutrition if it is poor. Avoid gum irritants such as commercial mouthwashes, alcohol, and tobacco. Change your toothpaste brand and avoid using mouthwashes if your swollen gums are caused by sensitivity to toothpaste or mouthwash. Use good oral hygiene . See a periodontist or dentist at least every 6 months. If your swollen gums are caused by a reaction to a drug, talk to your doctor about using a different type of medication. Never change medications without first talking to your doctor. Call your health care provider if Swelling is severe, persistent, or is accompanied by other unexplained symptoms Discomfort is associated with swelling What to expect at your health care provider's office The dentist will examine your mouth, teeth, and gums. You will be asked questions about your medical history and symptoms, such as: Quality
Do your gums bleed ? Time pattern
Did the swelling begin recently? Are they always swollen? Does th...
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