Controlling Your Diabetic Condition & its Connection to Good Oral Health
People with diabetes are more likely to have gum disease than people without diabetes. And, gum disease may also make it more difficult for people with diabetes to control their blood sugar levels. The relationship between gum disease and diabetes goes both ways. Periodontal (gum) disease can make it more difficult for diabetics to control their blood glucose levels and people with diabetes tend to have more gum disease.
What is Periodontal / Gum Disease?
Periodontal disease is an infection of the gums and bone that support the teeth; which causes bone loss, significant gum recession and tooth mobility. Diabetics have a higher risk for developing infections throughout the body—including periodontal disease. Infection leads to an impaired ability to process and/or utilize insulin. This, in turn, can cause blood sugars to be more difficult to manage and can make the gum infections more severe. Signs and symptoms of gum disease include:
- Gums that bleed
- Red, swollen and tender gum tissues
- Bad breath
- Loose or migrating teeth
What can I do?
Effective control of diabetes increases and improves the health of the gum tissues, and improved gum and oral health improves the ability to control blood sugars and betters diabetic control. When oral infections are treated and when people have good oral health, the management of diabetes markedly improves. Therefore, healthy gums assist in the overall control of diabetes, and vice?versa. For optimum oral health, diabetics should have four dental cleanings every year.
How do your Endocrinologist & Periodontist Work Together?
Your Endocrinologist and Periodontist will work together while you are in treatment in order to give you the best long term results. This may include dental implants, bone or soft tissue grafting, deep cleanings or 3-month maintenance visits. This professional support is highly recommended – your dentist and physician will work together to support your overall physical health.