Diabetes is a chronic condition that affects how your body processes sugar. It can cause a wide range of health problems including damage to your eyes, kidneys, nerves, and heart. However, people with diabetes also have an increased risk of developing dental problems. In this blog post, we will discuss the diabetes and dental health connection.
How Does Diabetes Affect Your Teeth and Gums?
People with diabetes have higher levels of glucose (sugar) in their blood. This high level of glucose can lead to many dental problems such as:
- Gum disease: High levels of glucose in your blood can increase your risk of developing gum disease. Gum disease is an infection of the tissues that surround and support your teeth. This condition can cause swollen and bleeding gums, bad breath, and tooth loss.
- Tooth decay: People with diabetes are at a higher risk of developing cavities due to the high level of glucose in their saliva. Bacteria in your mouth feed on sugar and produce acid which can erode the enamel of your teeth and cause cavities.
- Dry mouth: Diabetes can lead to a condition called dry mouth. This means that you do not have enough saliva to keep your mouth moist. Saliva is essential for washing away food particles and neutralizing acids produced by bacteria in your mouth. Without enough saliva, your teeth are more vulnerable to decay and other dental problems.
- Slow healing: People with diabetes tend to heal slower than those without diabetes. This means that any dental problems you have may take longer to heal. For example, if you have gum disease or a tooth infection, it may take longer to recover from these conditions.
What Can You Do to Maintain Good Dental Health if You Have Diabetes?
If you have diabetes, it is essential to take extra care of your teeth and gums. Here are some tips to help you maintain good dental health:
- Control your blood sugar levels: The best way to prevent dental problems is to control your blood sugar levels. This will help reduce your risk of developing gum disease, tooth decay, and other oral health problems.
- Brush and floss daily: Brush your teeth twice a day and floss at least once a day. Use fluoride toothpaste to help strengthen your teeth and prevent cavities.
- Use an antibacterial mouthwash: An antibacterial mouthwash can help kill bacteria in your mouth and prevent gum disease.
- Visit your dentist regularly: Regular dental checkups are essential for maintaining good oral health. If you have diabetes, your dentist may recommend more frequent checkups.
In conclusion, the diabetes and dental health connection is real, and people with diabetes are at a higher risk of developing dental problems. However, by taking care of your teeth and gums and controlling your blood sugar levels, you can reduce your risk of developing oral health problems. Don’t forget to visit our team at Petrolia Dental in Edmonton, for checkups and cleanings. Together, we can ensure healthy teeth and gums for people living with diabetes.