Dental Care and Diabetes

Diabetes can increase your risk of cavities, gingivitis, and periodontitis. The higher your sugar level, the higher the bacteria in your mouth, which causes these diseases. In turn, advanced gum disease (periodontitis) can elevate your blood sugar, which makes your diabetes more difficult to regulate. 

With the dangerous cycle that can occur between poor dental hygiene and diabetes, here are some ways to prevent the harmful effects diabetes can have on your mouth:

1. Regulate your blood sugar: This will help prevent gum disease, so make a commitment to following your doctor’s orders for a healthy diet and lifestyle.

2. Follow the general guidelines for dental hygiene: You’ve heard it before, but brush at least twice a day and floss at least once. Check out some flossing suggestions here.

3. Visit your dentist at least twice a year for routine cleanings and checkups–and be sure you remind your dentist of your diabetes. If you are having dental surgery, be sure to discuss proper ways to prevent infections with your doctor and dentist.

4. Consistently monitor for gum disease: Talk to your dentist about the signs and symptoms, and check frequently. 

5. Quit smoking: If you smoke, your risks of diabetes-related issues increase exponentially. Ask your doctor for some ways to assist you in quitting smoking.

Don’t let your diabetes rob you of a healthy and attractive smile. Team up with your doctor and dentist in order to maintain positive dental health care.

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About the author

A practicing dentist since 1982, Dr. Gary Imm, provides advanced cosmetic dentistry, including smile makeovers, sedation, implant and TMJ services. He is committed to progressive, extraordinary care for his guests. All Smiles Dental Care trains at least 300 hours each year at such prestigious centers as the Las Vegas Institute of Advanced Dentistry. (LVI)