Aug 15, 2006
I am HIV positive male, 27 but not on meds. I recently brought a new electric toothbrush which I used on the back of my mouth. I think I pressed too hard and my gums where I brushed have been extremely tender for tender for ten days now and are only just starting to recover enough for me to eat properly again. Is this a sign of a rapidly detereorating immune system? Or even AIDS?
| Response from Dr. Henry
Soft bristle brushes are recommended for gum/tooth hygiene. Use of medium/hard bristle brushes often can irritate gums even in HIV- persons. Gum disease is more common in HIV persons (can develop gingivitis which may require more specific treatment). Gum irritation after first use of electric toothbrush doesn't necessarily indicate a rapidly deteriorating immune system-your HIV specialist and/or dentist should be able to comment more specifically after an evaluation and with knowledge about your overall HIV status. KH
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