As our population ages, diagnoses of low testosterone have become increasingly common, periodontal disease.

man sitting on the side of the bed while wife looks disappointed in the background

Of Monkeys and Men

In a small retrospective study, Qian Wang, Ph.D., associate professor in biomedical sciences, and Paul Dechow, Ph.D., Regents professor and biomedical sciences chair from Texas A&M University Baylor College of Dentistry examined the skeletal remains of five castrated rhesus macaques, four of which had mandibles that were still intact. The researchers compared these with mandibles from deceased and intact rhesus macaques of similar age, and the differences between the jaws were so striking that they could actually be seen with the naked eye. The jaws of the castrated rhesus macaques were marked with periodontitis and other oral issues, much more so than the intact macaques. The jawbone that supports the teeth had even been dramatically receded on two 26 year old males.

Of course, these effects are seen in castrated males, which is not exactly the same as men with low testosterone. Future studies will have to be done to see if the effects are seen in men with low testosterone, but, at least, the findings are relevant for men who develop prostate cancer, suffer castration due to accidents, or who voluntarily undergo gender reassignment.

Researchers point out that while extensive work has been done on the link between estrogen and oral health, there has been little explanation of the link with male sex hormones.

A New Facet of Holistic Dentistry

At Contemporary Dentistry we acknowledge that oral health is intrinsically tied to our patient’s overall health and wellness. It is a key aspect of minimally invasive dentistry. While castration may seem like an extreme example, traumatic accidents do happen and patients who are having difficulty with periodontitis may need hormone therapy in addition to the traditional remedies such as flossing, cleanings, or surgery. Our dentists make sure to communicate with all of our patient’s health care providers to insure they are getting the best treatment possible. If you live in the Rochester area and are looking for proven dentists that you can trust, don’t hesitate to give Contemporary Dentistry a try. Give us a call at (585) 244-3337 to schedule an appointment today.