Can Iron Deficiency Cause Tooth Decay?

Iron deficiencies are one of the most common types of anemia out there. About ⅓ of the population in the entire world suffer from iron deficiencies.

Numerous factors can play a part in causing these deficiencies including poor diet, side effects of a major intestinal disease or even your genes.

Recently, an iron deficiency has also been linked with tooth decay, with individuals claiming that it can even put you at high risk of developing gum diseases.

In this article we’re going to be presenting all the evidence related to iron deficiency anemia as well as provide you with a definitive answer to the question: Can iron deficiency cause tooth decay?

What is an Iron Deficiency?

As the name suggests, an iron deficiency is caused by a lack of iron in your body. This insufficiency of iron then in turn reduces the production of hemoglobin. An essential substance in red blood cells that allows them to carry oxygen to all parts of your body.

Which is why one of the earliest symptoms of an iron deficiency is shortness of breath. If your iron deficiency persists for a long time then it could affect the performance of your muscles and tissues directly causing symptoms like extreme tiredness and fatigue.

iron deficiency

Can Iron Deficiency Cause Teeth Problems?

What plenty of people don’t realize is that an iron deficiency anemia can also negatively affect your tongue, teeth and gums. Its effect on your tongue is well documented as plenty of studies mention how an iron deficiency can lead to an unusually pale, swollen, inflamed or slightly smoothes tongue. Plus, it can also cause your mouth to remain unnaturally dry.

When it comes to your teeth though iron makes up your teeth’s enamel, dentin and bone. Sensitivity is one of the first things you’ll notice if you’re iron deficient. Plenty of individuals also ask: Can low iron cause yellow teeth?

Well our answer to that is yes as the yellowing of your teeth is a clear sign that they’re getting weaker. And since your body needs iron to keep your teeth strong, yellowing teeth can be a clear symptom of an iron deficiency.

On the contrary, people also ask: Can too much iron affect your teeth? Well the answer to that is yes as well. As too much iron can stick to your fissures and pits in your teeth staining them black like tar.

Can Iron Deficiency Cause Gum Problems?

In addition to causing tooth decay, an iron deficiency is also responsible for sensitivity in your gums. This can lead to gingivitis, a gum disease where your gums become unnaturally swollen and red.

Additionally, when you brush your teeth your gingivitis can cause your gums to bleed more easily.

If the health of your gums continue to deteriorate this gingivitis can turn into periodontitis, a more serious form of the disease where your gums actually start pulling away from your teeth, causing bone decay.

This can in turn lead to your teeth loosening or even falling out which is why treating your iron deficiency in its early stages is extremely important.

Signs that Indicate an Iron Deficiency?

As we mentioned before, detecting that you’re iron deficient early can go a long way in treating this deficiency as early as possible. For that you need to recognize the earliest signs that you’re deficient in the essential mineral.

On that note, here are some of the early signs you can look out for that your body’s low on iron.

Tiredness and Fatigue

We’ve mentioned this before but we’d like to reiterate that increased tiredness and fatigue are one of the earliest signs of an iron deficiency.

This feeling of fatigue isn’t temporary either as you’ll feel some form of it all throughout the day causing you to feel extra lethargic even though you haven’t exerted yourself at all.

Despite that, tiredness can sometimes start feeling like a part of your routine which makes it difficult to diagnose an iron deficiency based on this symptom alone.


Shortness of Breath

Shortness of breath paired with tiredness or fatigue is a textbook sign that you’re deficient in iron. This symptom is a direct result of your body not having enough hemoglobin.

A protein which helps carry oxygen around in your body. This lack of oxygen causes your lungs and heart to work overtime which can cause shortness of breath and limit your energy.

Final Thoughts

That’s all we have for you folks when it comes to our answer to the question: Can iron deficiency cause tooth decay? Hopefully, our explanation of how an iron deficiency can affect the health of your teeth was easy to comprehend and understand.

Also we’d advise that if you start contracting any of the symptoms we’ve mentioned above you see your doctor immediately as an iron deficiency if left unchecked can significantly decrease your quality of life.

For more information on the negative effects an iron deficiency can cause and how to treat it, we’d suggest booking an appointment with Ayesha Nasir, one of the leading nutritionists in Pakistan.

Lastly, do not in any case go about treating this deficiency on your own as that might lead to too much iron in your body which comes with its own set of negative symptoms.

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