Diabetes negatively impacts the entire body, including the mouth and teeth. People diagnosed with high blood sugar often experience oral health problems. But what is the relationship between diabetes and oral health?
If you have diabetes, it is necessary to maintain good oral health. A regular toothache can be unbearable, and we hate to break the bad news that the magnitude amplifies multiple times when we have diabetes.
Uncontrolled diabetes can affect the function of our white blood cells. The white blood cells serve as the body’s primary defense against infections, including those that affect our teeth and mouth. In the absence of proper blood sugar management, this defence mechanism does not function at its best, and you experience different oral or dental health problems.
Symptoms of dental health conditions:
- Bleeding gums
- Excruciating pain in the teeth
- Bad breath
Call your doctor immediately and obtain the necessary medical treatment if these symptoms occur a lot. Some dental health problems develop in people aged 50 and above. That is also the age where diabetes is most prominent.
List of dental health problems:
The following is the list of dental or oral health conditions when you have diabetes. Learn the following and discover preventive measures to have good and functional oral health.
- Gingivitis – The most common health problem that people with diabetes experience is gum disease. Its first stage is called gingivitis. It is a phase where the bacteria cause the gums to bleed, turn color red, and trigger soreness.
- Periodontitis – Addressing gingivitis immediately and administering the proper treatment prevents periodontitis from happening, as this is the second stage of untreated gingivitis. It is more severe and can also erode the bone that supports the teeth.
If you fail to control your blood sugar, you accumulate more sugar in your saliva. Since bacteria feed on sugar, they can turn it into acid that damages the teeth.
- Cavities – Also known as tooth decay, cavities refer to a condition that permanently damages hard surfaces on different areas of the teeth. Cavities occur due to frequent snacking, drinking sugary beverages, and the inability to clean the teeth well.
When too much starch or sugar enters the mouth, the bacteria that live in your mouth feast on this abundant supply and form acids that attack the teeth. Additionally, it can cause permanent tooth decay.
Monitor your blood sugar regularly and eat what is best for you. After doing so, you should apply the basic rules for having good oral health. These are as follows:
- Brush your teeth at least twice daily. Use antiseptic mouthwash in rinsing.
- Use a brand of toothbrush that has soft bristles. It’s more comfortable using one.
- If you are wearing dentures, do not sleep in them. Remove them during nighttime and clean them daily.
- Use dental floss after brushing your teeth.
- Quit smoking.
- Dentists recommend having a dental checkup and cleaning every 6 months. It is best if you follow this recommendation.
Keeping your mouth and teeth healthy is essential to general health. Besides preventing the development of cavities and other infections, it also improves our self-esteem. You cannot disregard the fact that maintaining a good smile and infection-free teeth can boost your confidence.