Diabetes and Dental Health Connection

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At Sanford Dental Excellence, we strive to give our patients a healthier smile. Dr. George Mitrogogos always stresses the importance of regular check-ups and preventive treatments. November 14th was World Diabetes Day. This day is dedicated to spreading awareness about diabetes and its devastating effects on the body. Your oral health and body are interconnected. Diabetes affects your dental health, and vice versa. You have chosen us to maintain your dental health. So, as a part of our job, we write this post to inform you about the relationship between diabetes and your mouth.

How Does Diabetes Affect Your Oral Health?

When you have diabetes, the body’s general ability to fight against diseases is reduced. So, the chances of infection increase. Moreover, the healing is delayed. Thus, if you have diabetes, you may be more prone to gum disease, fungal infections like candidiasis or oral thrush, and other dental problems.

If you have other accompanying systemic ailments along with diabetes like hypertension, anemia or others, the manifestations may be more severe. Usually, the people with diabetes and poor oral hygiene showcase a high number of carious teeth. Gum infection along with bone loss is also common in such patients. Periodontal problems may eventually lead to tooth loss if timely dental care is not received.

The salivary flow is also reduced in diabetics. Saliva is a natural cleanser that washes out the bacterial layer. Xerostomia or dry mouth may precipitate due to reduced secretion of saliva. Such patients have burning sensations in their mouths, increased prevalence of dental caries as well as gum problems.

Diabetes is a contraindication for dental treatments like implants. Moreover, the management of diabetics before, during, and after surgical procedures requires special care. You may have to take an extra dose of antibiotics before surgical procedures. People with diabetes also find difficulty in maintaining good oral hygiene with dentures.

As discussed in previous posts, the body’s general health and oral health is related to each other. If you have diabetes and a poor periodontal condition, the risk of heart ailments increases. Moreover, periodontal diseases can also precipitate preterm delivery. The child born may have low birth weight. Thus, diabetes can seriously affect your dental as well as overall health.

How Can You Take Care of Your Oral Health if You Have Diabetes?

Firstly, you should always tell your dentist if you have diabetes. The protocol for management of dental conditions changes if you have diabetes. Your dentist may prescribe a different medication before dental implant placement or take other necessary steps. Thus, you should always communicate with your dentist about your medical history. Many times, patients report to our clinic with multiple swellings or abscesses that are long-standing and do not heal. Also, in some cases of root canal treatment, there may be delayed healing or repetitive infection. This can be a result of diabetes.

Apart from this, you should carry out the proper treatment of diabetes by consulting a physician. Your blood sugar levels can be controlled by taking the prescribed insulin dose or the medicines regularly. Every step you take towards the management of diabetes benefits your oral health as well. If you have diabetes, be proactive. Always come in for regular check-ups at-least biannually. Proper scaling and debridement help to get rid of the bacterial load. Sometimes, we may advise you to come in for cleaning once every three months. Within the three months, you may develop a large amount of dental plaque. Therefore, we may do regular scaling as well.

If you want a healthy mouth when you have diabetes, make sure that you follow a good oral care regimen strictly. Brush your teeth at least twice and floss once a day. Use a tongue cleaner to scrape off the debris from your tongue. Moreover, avoid sugary and sticky foods. Make healthy choices in terms of diet. High intake of sugar will affect your dental health, as well as make your blood glucose levels high. Use the correct method of toothbrushing. If you use a manual toothbrush, change it once every three months. These steps will help you in maintaining good oral hygiene.

How Can We Help You When You Have Diabetes?

At Sanford Dental Excellence, we use the latest instruments and materials for diagnosis of dental diseases. Dr. Mitrogogos believes in monitoring your medical history and carrying out thorough dental examinations. These steps help to derive the provisional diagnosis of diabetes. We may refer you to a physician if necessary.

If you are diabetic and have special needs, please let us know. We always schedule appointments according to the convenience of our patients. We aim to give top-grade care to all our patients. If you have further questions or want to schedule your appointment, please call us at 407-794-4162. We will do our best to make sure that nothing stops you from smiling, not even diabetes!

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