Those with diabetes have a higher risk of gum disease than those with healthier blood sugar levels.
And it goes both ways – someone with a serious gum infection may have more difficulty in controlling blood sugar levels.
It is essential for everyone, but especially individuals with gum disease, to take good care of their mouth.
The Gum Disease – Diabetes Connection
Having high glucose levels makes it harder for the body to fight back bacteria in the mouth. Since gum disease is caused by a bacterial infection, those with diabetes are prone to having this infection develop. If not addressed, the bacteria that cause plaque can infect the teeth and gums which can result in the first level of gum disease called gingivitis.
Without treatment, gingivitis can worsen into more serious gum disease, or periodontitis. Here, there is tissue damage to the gums and underlying areas and the threat of tooth loss. Having diabetes makes an infection harder to fight.
Reversing the problem – having a serious infection such as periodontitis may contribute to rising blood sugar levels. So having serious gum disease can actually make your diabetes harder to control!
The bottom line – good oral health habits are very important for everyone, but extra critical for those with diabetes. Brush twice a day and floss the teeth daily. Don’t miss your dental exams and cleanings every 6 months!
If you have diabetes, we encourage you to discuss your condition with us. Let us know about any medications that you are taking. As a team, we can work together to help prevent gum disease while managing your diabetes.
Let Us Know If You Have Questions on Any Aspect of Oral Health Care
Dr. Lorraine Burio of Candlewood Dental Care has been treating and educating patients for over twenty-five years. Our office serves the New Fairfield, New Milford, Danbury, and Sherman areas of CT and Pawling, Patterson and Putnam Lake of New York. You can call us at 203-746-1200 or make an appointment here.