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periodontal disease and diabetes

Oral health complications are often overlooked when assessing risks for patients with diabetes. However, fluctuating blood sugar levels are a concern for gum disease. Diabetes can accelerate the progression of gingivitis and periodontitis.

You need to attend dental checkups to capture the earliest signs of oral complications. Our team at Jason Widner DMD Family Dentistry will develop a treatment plan that matches your diagnosis. We have a reputation for maintaining the highest standards of dental care.

What Causes Complications in Patients with Diabetes?

Diabetes could trigger multiple physiological changes in your oral cavity. Elevated sugar levels cause dehydration, leading to mouth dryness. A dry mouth is susceptible to the rapid spread of bacteria.

The saliva in your oral cavity discourages the growth of bacteria. Diminished saliva will cause plaque and tartar accumulation. Bacteria infestation is worsened by high levels of blood sugar.

Elevated insulin levels also burden the immune system. When you have diabetes, wounds take time to heal. Therefore, lesions, cuts, and gum inflammation will worsen with time.

Gum inflammation tends to progress to periodontitis if it remains untreated. You may notice your teeth loosening if you have untreated oral health problems and diabetes. In severe cases, you may experience malocclusions and tooth loss.

Preventing and Managing Oral Health Problems

People with diabetes can prevent gum disease by committing to a strict dental hygiene regimen. Since the disease tends to compromise the immune system, gum infections are riskier for patients with diabetes. Therefore, brushing for at least two minutes twice every day is highly recommended.

Flossing your teeth is essential for eliminating food debris between the teeth. Plaque and tartar in the crevices of your oral cavity can encourage bacteria growth, especially if your blood sugar is high.

Since high sugar levels impact the healing process, patients with diabetes must regulate their blood glucose. Insulin fluctuations can make it harder to treat gum disease at an advanced stage. It may require complex interventions and take longer to recover after the procedure.

Our dental professionals recommend maintaining a balanced diet with vitamins and minerals. Micronutrients in fruits and vegetables are essential for regulating the inflammation that causes gum disease.

If you smoke, consider quitting as soon as possible. The nicotine in tobacco damages blood vessels and makes you susceptible to gum disease. It can also increase your risk of cardiovascular complications that impact your health.

Dental Visits for Prevention and Treatment

Individuals are advised to see the dentist every six months for checkups. Nonetheless, patients with diabetes may require more visits per year due to the high risk of complications. Our dental team will schedule follow-up treatments to monitor tooth decay and gum disease symptoms.

A routine visit may involve deep cleaning around the tooth's root to address tartar. Tartar is a stubborn form of plaque that requires the experience of a certified oral specialist. The procedure addresses deposits on the tooth edge, thus preventing gum recession.

If you have diabetes and require more information or professional guidance, don't hesitate to consult our team at Jason Widner DMD Family Dentistry. Give us a call at 425-868-0123 to book an appointment.
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