If you're in the beginning stages of premenopause and experience insomnia, it's essential that you protect your oral health now. Premenopause or perimenopause brings on a number of symptoms that affect the way your body functions. Symptoms, such as insomnia, inadvertently harm your teeth, gums and jawbones by changing how they appear and function. You can take steps to protect your oral health from one of the most bothersome symptoms of premenopause.
Your Problem: Insomnia
Your inability to sleep or insomnia at night can trigger problems with your oral health during premenopause. Your body requires 7-9 hours of sleep each night to regenerate or regrow new cells. If you don't sleep throughout the night, your immune system can't fight off bacterial infections, including the bacteria in your mouth that cause gum disease.
During premenopause, swelling and bleeding develops in your gums, which leaves these tissues vulnerable to bacterial inflammations and infections. Bacteria is the leading cause of gingivitis and periodontitis.
Gingivitis and periodontitis are two types of gum disease. Although gingivitis is curable with the right dental cleanings and antimicrobial treatments, periodontitis isn't. Once periodontitis develops, you can lose your teeth or develop infections of the sinuses, ears and eye sockets.
Your body also needs sufficient sleep to manage the hormones of your reproductive system. Although your hormones decline during perimenopause, getting sufficient sleep at night slows down this loss. Estrogen and progesterone protect your blood from bacteria, as well as keep your blood vessels strong and healthy.
In addition to fluctuating hormones and gum inflammations, insomnia brought on by premenopause can aggravate your digestive system. You may experience bouts of gas and bloating that lead to periodic trips to the bathroom to find relief.
If the bloating in your digestive system creates heartburn, you can develop tooth erosion and decay. Stomach acids are strong enough to eat through your tooth enamel.
Finding ways to sleep better at night is the best way to protect your teeth and gums from insomnia-related dental problems.
Your Solutions for Insomnia: Retire to Bed Early and Eat Less for Dinner
Try going to bed several hours ahead of your usual time. Even if you don't fall to sleep right away, the extra rest gives your body time to relax and unwind. If retiring early doesn't work, try other methods to help you sleep better at night.
Drink Warm Unsweetened Coconut Milk
Drinking warm unsweetened coconut milk is an excellent way to relax before bedtime. Coconut milk contains natural sleep nutrients that soothe away stress and anxious nerves.
Drink one cup of coconut milk 15 minutes after dinner to soothe your digestive system and nerves. If you want to drink your milk sweet, add one teaspoon of honey to it.
Eat Smaller Meals That Fill You Up
Eating a warm bowl of oatmeal for dinner instead of a full meal might also do the trick. Oatmeal contains fiber and other beneficial grains that make you feel full without overstressing your digestive system. You experience less gas in your intestines and fewer incidences of heartburn.
Oatmeal and other types of oats help balance your hormones. Hormone fluctuations can trigger problems in your thyroid, which is the gland that regulates your hormones and metabolism. If your hormones overwhelm your thyroid by making it work harder to control them, you may experience more problems with your premenopause at night.
The two tips above may help you feel better at night, as well as protect your teeth and gums from problems. For the best results, practice the tips above every night or until you see your dentist for additional advice on how to manage your insomnia, premenopause and dental care.