Diabetes and Oral Health
Every year, millions of people suffer from diabetes. Diabetes has now become a common problem nowadays. Therefore, you might be familiar with its effects on the kidney, heart, eyes, and nerves. People with diabetes often take intensive care of their health concerning diet and nutrition. But how does diabetes link to oral health?
Many types of research have shown that diabetes directly correlates with oral health problems. Although diabetes has effects on the entire body, it can also affect your gums, teeth as well.
How can it affect gums and teeth? Well, poor blood sugar management is the major cause of it. When you are not able to manage blood sugar levels in your body, they weaken the white blood cells (that fights against bacteria). Thus, due to the inability of white blood cells to work effectively, your body fails to fight against the infections, including those in the mouth and gums.
Link between Diabetes and Oral Health Problems
As discussed above, diabetes can cause oral health problems due to inefficient blood sugar management. If a person is not able to manage their diabetes properly, it causes white blood cells to function improperly.
It is not diabetes that causes oral health problems, but the poor management of blood sugar. If you have high blood sugar then you’re prone to a whole set of problems such as fatigue, nausea, rapid heartbeat, shortness of breath, etc.
What are the Oral Health Problems that occur due to Diabetes?
Diabetes has its effects on the oral hygiene of a person, but it is not always that diabetes alone is the reason for oral health problems. People who have severe or uncontrolled blood sugar levels are more prone to develop tooth cavities or decay. On the other hand, people with controlled and managed blood sugar level does not develop oral health problems.
Following are some common oral health problems that arise in the people with diabetes-
Gingivitis and Periodontal Disease
Diabetic people with unmanaged blood sugar levels are likely to suffer from bleeding gums, also known as gingivitis. It is a painful and uncomfortable experience. Moreover, diabetes with high sugar levels causes thick blood vessels in the mouth. As a result, it makes it difficult for the body to absorb nutrients and get rid of the waste. Thus, the risk of infection increases.
Saliva in our mouth is very crucial for preventing gums or cavities. It helps in fighting against the bacteria from the mouth. Having a dry mouth makes things worse, even when your body is already weak. It leads to tooth decay, soreness, infections, and also creates a rearing ground for bacteria.
Additionally, many other reasons can cause dry mouth as well. For example, some medicines have side effects including dry mouth. Thus, in such a situation, it is necessary to keep your blood sugar level normal.
Diabetic people have antibiotics to eliminate bacterial infections. Sometimes, these antibiotics can also cause fungal infections inside your mouth. Moreover, people who wear dentures are prone to mouth fungus. If you wear them constantly without cleaning them properly, oral thrush is likely to grow inside your mouth or gums.
Tips to Maintain Oral Health
Diabetic people who are unable to manage their blood sugar levels should consult with a doctor. Diabetes not only have its effects on oral health, rather it is dangerous for the overall body. Here are some common tips that you can follow for better oral health.
- It is beneficial to show the list of medications and their dosage to the dentist. They will be aware of their side effects and the level of insulin. Thus, the dentist will prescribe accordingly.
- Diabetic people must visit a dentist more often for cleaning and check-up of their oral hygiene. This way, you can prevent any oral infection from arising by speaking with your dentist.
- People with diabetes should keep up with their brushing habits. Make sure you are diligent with brushing your teeth twice a day. It helps in removing any good debris from the mouth, which leads to the growth of bacteria.
- Diabetic people who smoke are likely to experience periodontal and thrush disease. It affects your blood flow to the gums. Thus, it is beneficial to talk with a doctor about ways to quit smoking.
- It is crucial to keep your blood sugar level under control. Fix a schedule to add to the reminder for checking up on your blood sugar level after a fixed period. Moreover, you can also have a visit to your doctor for a better understanding. Also, inform your dentist about your current blood sugar level, which enables them to plan an oral treatment accordingly.
If you’re suffering from diabetes, it is of utmost importance to keep your blood sugar level in check. It not only is good for your oral health, but it will keep your overall health on track. Contact us today