Jaw bone loss, also called osteonecrosis of the jaw (ONJ) can result in the complete deterioration of the jaw and the bones and teeth supporting it. This disease can be difficult to catch, as there often aren’t many signs until it’s too late. However, there are risk factors that you should be aware of that can help you catch ONJ early on.
ONJ is rare and there isn’t much known about it. In spite of this, there are several factors that have been proven to be connected to the disease. These factors include use of anabolic steroids, gingivitis (gum disease), poor oral health care, and excessive exposure to radiation. Also linked to ONJ are smoking, osteoporosis, and alcohol abuse. Injury to the jaw can also increase this risk.
The best ways to minimize the chances of this irreversible disease are through proper oral hygiene. Regular dental checkups, and brushing and flossing twice a day can prevent jaw bone loss.
If you have any of the above risk factors, please make an appointment with Dr. Schacht at Denver Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery in Denver, Colorado.