Dental Care In Multiple Sclerosis/ Chronic Illness
In general, I’ve had quite the time with my mouth in recent years, since my Multiple Sclerosis diagnosis. My gums stayed inflamed. We could not tell if it was the MS, or my medications, some of which do dry out my mouth, immune suppression, or all of those reasons.
Finally, when the pandemic hit, I refused to go in for any 3 monthly visits at the dentist. I researched and found healthy organic tooth powders that did not contain fluoride or glycerin, as apparently, all the “healthy” ones I’d been using had glycerin, and this also has a negative impact. One other thing that I stopped doing, was drinking lemon water all day long. Instead, I started to limit it to first thing in the morning, as it was literally leaching my teeth and weakening my gums. I also started to use an LED light for my teeth, which incidentally helped my gums. Voila! Fixed.
For the past few years, I’ve been on a quest to get the mercury fillings out of my mouth, which I did, leaving one toothless gap. Last December, I also took out my root canal, leaving another toothless gap, on the other side from the prior gap.
I recently got non-metal dental implants put in. Zirconia Ceramic to be precise. Yay!!! Titanium is not necessarily biocompatible for those of us with autoimmune disease, and other chronic illnesses, like they try to convince us. But this deserves it’s own post later.
Getting Dental Implants In The Setting of MS, Trigeminal Neuralgia/ Chronic Pain
Here is my advice to you, if you suffer from Trigeminal Neuralgia (TN), or chronic pain, which many of us with Multiple Sclerosis (MS) do, and plan on getting dental implants.
See a Biologic oral surgeon and dentist, going forward. The experience is night and day. I like the Platelet Rich Plasma injection (spun down from my blood that is collected in the chair-pretty cool!). Experiencing ozone with the implants was a first, and now I want ozone in my life. It was a similar effect to an infrared sauna, as it made my entire body feel energized for at least 5 days, maybe 7.
Try not to get 2 implants on the same day, especially if they’re not on the same side of your mouth. It leaves you nowhere to chew with, as you ease back into real food, but still try to rest the side that is healing. I may cost more as 2 procedures however. Unsure of that bit. 😀
Mentally prepare ahead. It’s surgery. You will not be able to eat normal food for a while. Try to eat your favorite crunchy foods leading up to it. I don’t even think I had breakfast. I came home quite hungry and could only have a smoothie. Plus, I couldn’t eat my nuts for a while. Finally, I started to use my husband’s tiny dry grinder for coffee, to grind my nuts. And it will be 3-4 months before I get the crown. All I have now is a white stump!
Plan the implant type ahead. Research. Do NOT get a titanium or metal dental implant. If you have a chronic illness, there is a possibility that you will have a reaction to metal in your body. Consider Ceramic Zirconia implants.
Follow every instruction to the letter. Let the instruction sheet be your Bible for the next few days.
Ensure that you do the salt rinse religiously, for as long as is recommended, or even longer. The side with TN also appears to be more prone to infection as well. Certainly, it appears to experience inflammation longer.
Be prepared to have more pain/ sensitivity on the side in which you have TN.If you have chronic pain, you will likely have pain longer than the estimate they give you of 5 days. It’s all in how your brain processes. I got to where I was talking to the pain! “Though you feel like you’re going to kill me right now, you’re not. It’s just my brain playing tricks on me. I’m going to survive this and be OK.” I sounded to myself like I was doing EFT Tapping without the actual tapping. But my words followed the pattern of what you would say while tapping. Try to picture that. 🤣
I took way more Motrin than I like, as I do not like to take any Motrin at all. And I also started back on my Carbamazepine for TN, which I hadn’t taken recently, since my TN hadn’t been that bad. My mild TN symptoms prior to the implant was serving as a way to know what days I had more inflammation, actually, and I like to have that compass.
There is a possibility of complications due to your immune suppressed state, if you are on a disease modifying therapy. Infections, implant not integrating, implant coming loose, and needing to take it out are all possibilities. See that pretty Xray? That was mine after the implants. But the top one already had to come out at my 2 week check up. It was loose. I could have just pulled it out myself.
We will revisit that implant again in the future, but use a different one, though still zirconia. It might be a 2 step process, or the stump might be buried under my gum, is what the oral surgeon said. But for now, I have one side of my mouth back, to eat with as the other one heals. I feel a little free. And with the antibiotic I unfortunately had to take, I feel better. Plot twist.
So, hopefully you have a better dental implant experience than I did, because of my share, seeing as I just waltzed in there like it was a dental cleaning and no biggie. It was an entire oral surgery y’all!!! 😜 🤣