While many of the medical risks associated with the potentially life-threatening condition called diabetes are well known, people are sometimes not aware of the connection between diabetes and dental health. Whether you have been recently diagnosed with diabetes, or you are worried about a family member with the condition, it’s important to note which dental symptoms might relate to diabetes.
Can Diabetes Lead to Gum Disease?
Diabetics do, unfortunately, tend to have a higher tendency toward periodontal (gum) disease. There are various levels of severity with gum disease. Periodontal infections are caused by a bacteria in your mouth which are called P. gingivalis. These persistent germs attack and destroy your gingival tissues (i.e. gums). Since diabetics are generally more susceptible to bacterial infections, it makes sense that they might have a higher risk of bacterial invasion in their mouths. There is also an oral-systemic connection which relates gum disease to other dangerous health conditions such as coronary artery disease and strokes.
Diligent Oral Self Care for Diabetics
When periodontal disease isn’t treated, the condition can eventually destroy the gingival tissues which surround your teeth. This will sometimes cause loosened teeth, requiring extraction. At that point, you’ll have to make a decision on potential tooth replacements. You may even have teeth fall out suddenly, which is very disconcerting. It’s important that diabetics keep up with good oral health practices, including twice daily oral hygiene. Maintaining a biannual checkup schedule is another wise idea, although if you are tending toward dental issues, you may need to visit Dr. Mai even more often. It is extremely important that diabetics keep their dentists informed of any pertinent oral health issues which could be related to their condition. Dentists know what to look for in the mouths of diabetic patients with the goal of ensuring that any periodontal disease is diagnosed and treated as early as possible.
About Mai Dentistry
At Mai Dentistry: Mai-Truong Vi H DDS and our team offer you confident, compassionate dental care. Our goal is to help you achieve a bright, beautiful smile. For our patients who don’t speak English, our office is fluent in Spanish and Vietnamese. To schedule an appointment, call today at 972-530-0552.