Diabetes is a condition in which the pancreas isn’t secreting enough insulin to combat the glucose in the bloodstream. It can cause all sorts of health problems. While many associate it with problems like poor circulation, trouble with eyesight and fatigue, few realize that it can also be a source of poor dental health. There are many dental problems that can be related to the disease. That’s why it is important to get frequent dental check-ups and cleanings. Here are some problems your dentist will be watching out for:
There are two types of gum disease that are often spotted in diabetic patients. An early stage of gum disease known as gingivitis is most common in those with diabetes. If gingivitis is not treated, it can lead to a much more serious form of gum disease known as periodontitis. Proper oral hygiene is not enough to combat this condition. As those with the condition may be susceptible to it because their body is less able to fight the infection that causes gum disease.
Serious gum disease needs to be treated by a dentist right away. It is not only detrimental to our oral health. It can actually lead to the progression of the disease itself. Having gum disease can make it more difficult for the body to regulate blood glucose levels.
Diabetics are at a higher risk for cavities. Cavities are caused when bacteria invades the tooth. Part of the reason diabetics often experience this problem is because they have less saliva. Saliva helps to protect the teeth from these bacterial invasions. The other reason is that there is more glucose present in the saliva that the body’s able to produce. Since there is less insulin to counter-act it.
As noted before, having a dry mouth can lead to cavities. Diabetics must deal with the discomfort that a dry mouth produces. Having a dry mouth tends to lead to bad breath as well. That’s why it is especially important to use mints, gum, and mouthwash if you suffer from diabetic, dry-mouth symptoms.
Diabetes and Oral Health Are Heavily Linked
Diabetics need to take extra precautions when it comes to their dental health. Those with the condition should be sure to brush their teeth after every meal, visit the dentist at least twice a year, and never forget to floss. While being a diabetic makes it harder to keep up with dental health, it is possible.
If you are a diabetic, and would like to schedule a consultation with our friendly dental staff, contact us today. With a convenient Port Washington location, you’re in good (local) hands!