Watch Your Mouth: Oral Health Tips

When thinking about complications associated with diabetes, many people may be surprised to learn that oral health is one of them. In fact, research shows that there is an increased prevalence of gum disease among those with diabetes. iStock_000002486447XSmall

Why is this? Well, if your blood glucose levels are poorly controlled, you are more likely to develop serious gum disease and lose more teeth than people without diabetes. Like all infections, serious gum disease may be a factor in causing blood glucose to rise and may make diabetes harder to control.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, people with diabetes are two times more likely to develop gum disease. In fact, about one-third of people with diabetes have severe gum disease that includes the loss of attachment of their gums to their teeth.

Other oral problems associated with diabetes include: thrush, an infection caused by fungus that grows in the mouth, and dry mouth which can cause soreness, ulcers, infections and cavities.

It’s the perfect time to talk about this because October is National Dental Hygiene Month. To help raise awareness about oral health, and what people can do to help prevent dental problems, the Association is joining with Colgate to launch a new campaign. Our goal is to provide tips for prevention and treatment including:

•    First and foremost, control your blood glucose level. Good blood glucose control can also help prevent or relieve dry mouth caused by diabetes.

•    Watch your mouth and take good care of your teeth and gums! Begin to develop healthy oral care habits, like brushing and flossing. Research shows that brushing twice a day can help improve gum health in as little as four weeks.

•    Visit your dentist for regular checkups every six months. While your doctor and certified diabetes educator play an important role in helping with your diabetes, so does your dentist. People with diabetes have special needs and your dentist and hygienist are equipped to meet those needs – with your help.

•    Keep your dentist and hygienist informed of any changes in your condition and any medication you might be taking. Postpone any non-emergency dental procedures if your blood sugar is not in good control.

•    To control thrush, a fungal infection, maintain good control of your diabetes, avoid smoking and, if you wear them, remove and clean dentures daily.

So remember, if you are living with diabetes, please watch your mouth! Visit the Association’s website for more tips and information on oral health.

Tweet this post    Share on Facebook    Email this post
This entry was posted in Complications and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to Watch Your Mouth: Oral Health Tips

  1. Tim Kirby says:

    Thank you for raising awareness for oral health by providing these great tips, especially the one about controlling your blood glucose level.

  2. Michael says:

    Maintaining a good oral hygiene is a must specially for diabetic patients. People with poorly controlled diabetes have a higher risk of tooth problems and gum disease. If diabetic patient is affected with serious gum disease it may potentially affect the blood glucose control which will contribute to the progression of diabetes. A regular visit to the dentist will ensure healthy gums and teeth.

  3. Flawless dental says:

    This is really awesome articles about oral health. People with diabetes must be aware of their oral health as oral health is related to diabetes. Hope this article going to help those patients.

  4. garry says:

    Diabetes really takes its toll on many parts of the body. A friend of mine has diabetes and he is always having complications from it, I will share this article with him and maybe help him avoid any gum disease issues in the future.

  5. Patrice M. Theiss says:

    Very interesting article. Good thing to know there are sites like this that puts up awareness about oral health<. This will really help readers out there especially with diabetes to raise more awareness about their health.

  6. Time and time again i read about the high incidence of gum disease with diabetic patients which is an unfortunate symptom. It is important to floss daily, take extra care of your teeth, reduce sugar intake and see your dentist regularly. this can lead to decay, gum disease, root canals, bone loss and from there a host of other medical issues.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


*