Periodontal disease can wreak havoc on a person’s gums and teeth, sometimes causing permanent tooth damage or even loss. While many mainstream treatments for this disease include antibiotics and dental procedures, there is some evidence that the antioxidant coenzyme Q10 may also play a role in symptom management. Talk to your doctor or dentist about coenzyme Q10 before trying it.
Dental Bone Loss
A variety of disorders, including the common periodontal disease, can cause dental bone loss. Periodontal disease is widespread in the United States, according to 2010 information from the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research. In its milder forms, it causes swelling and tenderness in the gums. In its more severe forms, however, periodontal disease causes an immune reaction in which the body’s cells attack the structures of the teeth themselves, including the bones and tissues that hold them in place. Anyone can get periodontal disease, though smoking and diseases like diabetes can increase your risk. In addition, there is some evidence that those with the disease may be deficient in the substance coenzyme Q10, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center.
Coenzyme Q10 Function
Coenzyme Q10, abbreviated as CoQ10, helps produce cell energy, which cells, including those in the gums, require for normal function. Coenzyme Q10 is present throughout your body. You don’t have to take a supplement to get enough CoQ10. Most people get enough from their diets, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center. CoQ10 is found in foods like liver, fish and whole grains. In addition to its cellular energy boosting properties, CoQ10 is a type of antioxidant – a substance thought to rid the body of free radicals that increase cell damage.
Coenzyme Q10 and the Teeth
CoQ10 has been studied for its effects on periodontal disease, with some positive outcomes. While the research is limited, MayoClinic.com reports that CoQ10 might help treat the disease as either an oral supplement or applied directly to the gums. However, more studies are needed before drawing any strong conclusions on CoQ10’s effectiveness for periodontal disease. Additionally, UMMC notes that in a few small clinical studies, CoQ10 supplements caused faster healing and tissue repair in those with gum disease. In fact, oral rinses that contain CoQ10 in addition to other ingredients are commonly prescribed for periodontal disease treatment.
Talk to your doctor about CoQ10 before you try it. While you can purchase some forms without a prescription, you may require assistance to choose the supplement that best fits your needs. Your dentist may prefer you use a topical gel over an oral supplement, or may prescribe a stronger version. Taking CoQ10 without medical guidance can be dangerous, as it can interfere with certain medications including those that regulate your blood pressure. It can also lower blood sugar levels in some people, which can cause health complications if you are diabetic. There is little harm, however, in increasing the amount of CoQ10-rich foods in your diet. Talk to your doctor or dentist for more guidance.