Diabetes is a chronic disease affecting a growing number of adults and children in the United States. It negatively affects the eyes, nerves, kidneys, heart and other important systems in the body. Diabetes can also cause serious oral health issues for those who suffer from it.
Patients with Diabetes are at increased risk for developing periodontal (gum) disease. Periodontal disease is an infection of the gum and bone that surrounds the teeth and holds them into place. It can lead to painful chewing difficulties and, if not properly treated, tooth loss. In fact, gum disease is currently the leading cause of tooth loss in the United States. Dry mouth is another symptom of diabetes and is often a symptom of undetected diabetes. Dry mouth can cause oral health issues including soreness, ulcers, infections and tooth decay. All of these problems are exacerbated by smoking!
If you suffer from Diabetes, the best thing you can do to protect your oral health is to maintain good blood glucose control. Seeing your doctor regularly to monitor your Diabetes and blood glucose levels is an important step in maintaining good oral health while living with Diabetes. Another key component involves your oral hygiene. If you have Diabetes, it is even more important to maintain good oral health by brushing and flossing your teeth regularly. It is also very important to visit your dentist regularly for dental exams and dental cleanings. Lastly, refraining from smoking, or quitting smoking is an essential part of maintaining good oral health.
If you have questions about Diabetes and the effect on your oral health, talk with a qualified dentist in your area.
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