A number of you have written in to let me know that you are currently undergoing chemotherapy. Please know that my best wishes are with you and your families for a speedy and total recovery.
While chemo is in many cases a beneficial and life-saving or extending procedure, its side effects are well-documented, and in many cases, severe. If you or someone you love is undergoing chemotherapy, you are probably familiar with chemo’s tendency to cause fatigue, hair loss, constipation, changes in appetite, and infection.
But there is a less-discussed side effect of chemo as well, and it’s why many of you reached out to me: Chemotherapy can lead to incredible gum sensitivity, which makes brushing your teeth painful and difficult. Luckily, I do have a remedy for this problem.
Read on to find out why chemotherapy causes gum sensitivity, why it’s important to keep brushing your teeth anyway, and how the GuruNanda Butter on Gums Clinical Care+ Toothbrush can help.
WHY DOES CHEMOTHERAPY CAUSE GUM SENSITIVITY?
Chemotherapy can lead to many side effects where your oral health is concerned. Beyond painful and sensitive teeth and gums, chemo can cause mouth sores, difficulty swallowing (also known as dysphagia), trismus (also known as lockjaw), and changes in taste. In children, chemotherapy may cause baby teeth to fall out prematurely, and permanent teeth to be slower to come in.
This happens because chemotherapy kills quickly dividing cells. This is why chemotherapy can be so effective in stopping the growth of cancer–cancer cells divide and multiply rapidly. But unfortunately, the cells in your mouth rapidly divide and multiply too. For that reason, they are especially sensitive to chemotherapy and can be killed off during and around the procedure.
Having fewer gum cells makes your gums more sensitive to brushing. This is why, if you are undergoing chemotherapy, you may find the process painful. In addition, some types of chemotherapy may affect the salivary glands. Less saliva in your mouth can lead to dry mouth, as well as further increasing gum and tooth sensitivity.
WHY SHOULD I KEEP BRUSHING MY TEETH ANYWAY?
I mentioned the connection between cancer treatment and infection above, but let me say it even more clearly here: during chemotherapy, your body cannot fight off infection, so it’s incredibly important to do all you can to prevent infection from occurring in the first place.
Saliva plays an incredibly important role in preventing tooth decay – fighting bad bacteria and replacing tooth mineral in the early stages of decay. With less saliva, therefore, you are more susceptible to the bad bacteria that lead to tooth decay. Plus, with fewer gum cells, you may be facing gum erosion – which can lead the vulnerable roots of your teeth being exposed.
Brushing your teeth, tongue, and gums twice a day is vitally important, as is flossing, using a mouthwash, and staying hydrated to fight dry mouth.
Because chemotherapy has so many effects on your oral wellness, it is also crucial that you keep your dentist in the loop throughout the entire process. Don’t hesitate to ask questions or let your dentist know about any new issues that arise.
Your dentist should regularly inspect your teeth and gums, as well as do dental X-rays. They should be creating a treatment plan for any issues you face, as well as helping you keep up your regular dental cleaning schedule.
WHICH TOOTHBRUSH WILL HELP ME WITH GUM SENSITIVITY?
Now that you know how important dental care is during chemotherapy, the question remains: Is there a toothbrush that can help with gum sensitivity?
I am very proud to say that there is. The GuruNanda Butter on Gums Toothbrush is made of 800+ Softex™ ultra-soft, smooth-ended bristles that gently remove food particles and plaque while polishing the teeth. These bristles are multi-directional, which provide a deeper, more thorough cleaning of teeth and gums, breaking up plaque without creating the gum erosion that leads to tooth decay. The easy-to-use, ergonomic handle makes it easy to brush your teeth gently yet thoroughly. The GuruNanda Butter on Gums Toothbrush is BPA- and Latex-free, ensuring a safe experience for both kids and adults.
It’s no wonder that this toothbrush is recommended by a gum implant surgeon. I know of many people currently undergoing chemotherapy who have been amazed by how beneficial it is, and I am proud to be able to support them in this small yet crucial way. The GuruNanda Butter on Gums Toothbrush is also sold in a convenient, affordable 6-pack so you don’t have to worry about running out.
There is so much to keep track of during chemotherapy, and a lot of stress to manage. Don’t let brushing your teeth add to everything you are dealing with. Choose GuruNanda Butter on Gums Toothbrush and give yourself the gentle yet effective brush you deserve.