Oral Lichen Planus And Its Effect On Our Overall Health


When we learn about oral health, we tend to spend a lot of time talking about tooth decay and gum disease. While these two are major considerations in lifelong oral health, they aren’t our only oral concerns. Our oral cavity comprises a complex system made of multiple tissues and organs. One component of this system is the mucus membranes that make up much of the interior surface of our mouth. The cheeks, lips, and upper and lower palette are all comprised of mucous membranes and comprise the oral mucosa. 

Oral Lichen Planus And Its Effect On Our Overall Health

Oral lichen planus is an inflammatory condition that occurs within the oral mucosa. While uncommon, this condition typically appears alongside autoimmune diseases and appears as a white lacy or patchy pattern across the mucosa. These patches can develop into redness, swelling, and eventually, open sores or ulcers when it becomes more advanced. The following are some of the most common symptoms of oral lichen planus:

  • Oral dryness and periods of dry mouth
  • Inflammation and redness in the oral cavity
  • Fine lines or patches of white within the oral cavity
  • Burning sensations within the oral cavity
  • Open ulcers or sores

When our patients are experiencing symptoms like these, it’s critical for them to report to our offices. While they are common indicators of OLP, they can also identify other oral health concerns. The white patches, lines, and open sores that won’t heal are also common indicators of oral cancer. 

There is no cure for oral lichen planus, but its symptoms are treatable. The goal of the treatment of this condition is to limit its advance and ensure that symptoms remain properly managed. With consistent care and careful maintenance, limiting the impact of OLP symptoms on your quality of life is possible.

The most effective approaches to managing OLP include:

  • Lifestyle changes
  • Stress management
  • Pharmaceutical treatment
  • Dietary changes

The underlying causes of oral lichen planus are not well understood. What is known is that it tends to appear in those who are struggling with an autoimmune disease. It has also appeared due to an injury, oral infection, or in response to certain medications. In these cases, it may be possible to eliminate the symptoms by addressing the underlying aggravating factor. While OLP will never truly go away, taking steps to avoid triggers can help ensure it has a minimal impact on your life.

Receive Oral Lichen Planus Care With Laser Dental Bakersfield

If you’re concerned you may be struggling with oral lichen planus, contact our office to schedule a consultation and exam. You’ll receive a comprehensive exam and dental history review during your visit to our location in Bakersfield, CA. We’ll discuss your concerns and plan an effective treatment approach that will get results. You can start by calling our offices at (661) 885-9054 and scheduling your visit today. Don’t let your oral health slide by ignoring symptoms. Take control of them by seeking effective care with Laser Dental Bakersfield today!

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Dr. Jeannie Molato, DMD – Top Dentist in Bakersfield, CA

The art and science of dentistry has become my career’s passion. I can utilize my artistic passion and skill to give my patients smiles they have always dreamed of. I am also able to relieve my patients of their pain and discomfort, restore function to better their quality of life and educate the patients how to take care and maintain their oral health.