Oral health issues of the immune compromised finally addressed

HIV and AIDS, along with all other diseases that affect or compromise the immune system of the affected patients frequently have dental consequences as well. As AIDS patients are painfully aware. the human oral cavity is a sight of a constant battle against the bacteria of the outside world, and the immune hiv, aids, system is constantly working on stabilizing the mouth and making sure that everything works just right, with enough bacteria in the mouth to protect it from other bacteria, but not so much that the teeth and gums are harmed. When the immune system is weakened, the mouth is one of the first places that this will make itself apparent, as the balance will be destroyed, and bacteria will run amuck causing all sorts of problems. 

Unique problems

The problems that immune compromised individuals have to deal with are unique to them, and require more research and more attention, as this segment of the population is frequently overlooked. Doctors are usually completely absorbed with keeping them alive and their organs functioning, but as this is becoming easier and easier the more we research these conditions, and the more advanced and successful the medications used to treat these conditions become, the more other problems, like oral health will come into focus.

The unique problems that affects immunocompromised patients are a much more frequent occurrence of oral warts and oral fungus like oral thrush, that usually only affects children, and other infections that rarely rear their heads in healthy human populations.   

Unique solutions

Finally, these problems are being recognised and dealt with. A prestigious dental school in Los Angeles, a place that has been especially hit over the decades by the AIDS epidemic has been given a grant to do research into the oral needs of AIDS patients and other whose immune systems are deficient. The grant was for a whopping 2.36 million dollars, and was granted by the Los Angeles County Department Of Health Services.


While much of this money is being spent on research, the folks in LA know that HIV and AIDS most negatively affects the poorest and most defenseless members of society. If you can afford the medication that keeps you healthy, AIDS is not the worst thing that can happen to you, but if you are already struggling with a menial job trying to make ends meet, AIDS is nothing short of a painful and relatively quick death sentence. It is these members of society (incidentally also the part of society which is most profoundly affected by the disease) that need outreach the most, so much of the money is being spent on providing fillings, extractions, root canals, x-rays and antibiotics to people in need. I honestly cannot think of a more wonderful way of spending that money, and spending some on research and some on actual dental treatments is, in my humble opinion, the best possible way this money can be spent.

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