HIV infection puts you at greater risk for oral and dental problems including fungal infections and gum disease. A commmon fungal infection that occurs in HIV when you immune system is weak is oral thrush. This may also occur in conditions like diabetes, cancer and from wearing dentures.

Be sure to see a doctor if you think you have oral thrush, and if you are given medication, be sure to take the medication as prescribed.

Tips to Maintain Good Oral Hygiene

Brush your teeth twice a day
Change your toothbrush every 3 – 6 months or when the bristles are bent
Change your toothbrush after a major illness or the flu
Floss daily
Drink water instead of sugary drinks
Avoid sugary snacks
Have a dental checkup every six months
Brush your teeth for at least two minutes each time with ten circular movements of the brush per tooth
Quit smoking
Avoid excessive alcohol intake

Do you need to see a dentist?

You need to see a dentist if you answer YES to any of the following questions:
  • Has it been more than one year since you have been to the dentist?
  • Do you have tooth pain, mouth sores, bleeding gums or loose teeth?
  • Do you often have a dry mouth or experience a change in your sense of taste?