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Hormones, Periods, and Your Dental Health

By Jill Feilmeier on December 27, 2016 in Dental Health

No one looks forward to that time of the month. Period. The pain is what makes these monthly monsters so miserable. But in addition to cramps and cravings, your menstrual cycle affects your mouth, too. Here are some symptoms to watch out for: 

Hormones, Periods and Your Dental Health

Bad Breath

Any change in hormones can cause an imbalance in your oral health ecosystem, leading to bad breath. Try an alcohol-free mouthwash to omit the odor.

Swollen Gums

Pre-period symptoms can bloat more than just your belly. Hormones accelerate estrogen and progesterone production, so expect red, tender and swollen gums. Referred to as menstruation gingivitis, symptoms should calm down once your period begins. Though cravings convince you otherwise, forego fries and chocolate malts for foods low in carbs and sugar. Sugar can irritate inflammation in your gums, breasts and belly.


Inflamed gums mean an increase in blood flow and changes in how gum tissue reacts to plaque. As a result, you may notice small amounts of blood after you brush or floss. Continue your normal dental routine, but be extra gentle.

If any of these symptoms stick around post-period, talk to your dentist. No matter what kind of cycle you experience every month, remember to stay on top of your overall health and your oral health routine.