Diabetes affects over 30 million Americans today. Most people are aware that living with diabetes requires special attention to your health, but oftentimes, not enough attention is given to the needs of oral health. People with diabetes are two times more likely to develop gum disease and other oral health concerns, so dental care should not be neglected.
The first step to maintaining your oral health is a good oral hygiene routine that includes:
- Daily brushing and flossing
- Regular dental check-ups
- Controlling your blood glucose levels
People with diabetes are more prone to some oral health concerns such as:
- Tooth Decay – people with diabetes often suffer from dry mouth and decreased saliva production which can lead to the growth of bacteria. Bacteria coating the teeth can create plaque and cavities.
- Early Gum Disease – diabetics have a higher risk of gum disease because they are more susceptible to infection. When plaque develops and isn’t removed promptly, it becomes tartar. Tartar irritates the gum line and can cause gingivitis. Those with diabetes are more like to have gingivitis because they have a lower resistance to infection.
- Periodontitis – when left untreated, gingivitis will spread from the gums to the soft tissue and bone structure of your teeth. This condition is called periodontitis. In addition to tooth loss and increased risk of stroke or heart attack, periodontitis can make it harder to keep your diabetes under control.
Because of the increased risk for oral health problems, it is important to be aware of warning signs for these conditions. Some of them are:
- Bleeding gums
- Dry mouth
- Sore spots
- White patches
If you suffer from diabetes, be sure to let us know. We will provide you with the right information and personalized care that you need. Call us today at 979-968-9451 or you can contact us online.
Dr. Karen Roberts