Smile through your menses - by Dr Bidushi Ganguli - CollectLo

Smile through your menses

Dr Bidushi Ganguli - CollectLo

Dr Bidushi Ganguli

Content Writer

3 min read . Jan 12


This is a helpful note to all menstruators! Trust me, you will thank me later.

During 'that time of the month,' your body and mind might hit a low, but it's completely normal. But guess what? Amidst this turbulence of hormones, your body is dropping hints for an upgrade in your well-being.  Pay attention, because these signals are your body's way of nudging you toward better health. All you need to do is turn one of these signals into a symphony of self-care. 

Since this is coming from an oral healthcare worker, let me tell you more about your oral health during your menses. 

In your mouth, the gums and oral tissues are in a constant state of blood perfusion.  They're not just there for looks; gums snugly cover the bone, cushioning your precious teeth. Picture it as your teeth's very own protective organ! The gum lining is a relentless warrior, tirelessly battling bacteria from the outside world. A frontline defender, ensuring your oral oasis stays healthy and your teeth are protected. If your gums are inflamed, then you will show symptoms like bad breath, redness of the gums, and most commonly, bleeding gums, especially while brushing.   The oral bacteria progressively infiltrate the gums, leading to the degradation of the surrounding tooth-supporting bones that cause loosening of teeth. These bacteria also gradually enter the bloodstream, giving rise to systemic inflammation that can impact your overall health. Unfortunately, the process is slow, and the fact that pain and tenderness of the gums are very rare means that the cause and symptoms of inflammation are overlooked easily.

About 7–10 days before your flow, you might experience mood swings, impatience, and melancholy—all thanks to the progesterone surge during your luteal phase. And when you start to bleed, that low energy you're feeling? It's the result of a sudden dip in both estrogen and progesterone. This hormonal roller coaster isn't just in your head; it's got a direct ticket to impact the blood perfusion of your tissue. Interestingly, it's been observed in many individuals that the symptoms of gum inflammation can appear or worsen just before or during menstruation. This serves as a signal to take a prompt visit to your friendly neighborhood periodontist (a gum specialist). The hormonal changes in your body can worsen an existing gum inflammation, thus showing symptoms.

To maintain good oral health, a fundamental guideline is to brush your teeth twice a day using a soft toothbrush, avoiding hard or medium ones. If you see blood while brushing, that's a big signal to hit up your dentist. And any gum pain, tenderness, or redness? Report that ASAP. For a quick fix before you can see your dentist, or if you have a schedule and cannot visit your dentist too soon, rinse and gargle with lukewarm salt water a couple of times a day. Include some anti-inflammatory foods in your diet during that time of the month; it will naturally cut down on your dental trips. You need your vitamins, especially Vitamin C and Vitamin K, that you’ll get from increasing citrus and green leafy vegetables in your diet. There is no need to go for vitamin pills unless your dentist prescribes them to you.

We call wellness losing weight, heart health, detoxing, etc., but we forget about our oral health when the mouth is the mirror of the body. Each and every point of our body is connected; that's how strange nature has made us.