How are Diabetes and Gum Disease Connected?
Did you know that diabetes and gum disease have a strong connection? We’ve all seen the ads on TV for diabetes but none of them seem to mention the link between it and oral health. The fact is that people with diabetes often develop severe gum disease earlier in life.
A lot of the time it’s painless so it often goes untreated until it’s too late. Approximately 25.8 million people in America have diabetes.Only 18.8 million people have been diagnosed with the disease which means that 7 million Americans have it and don’t know it yet.Silent Warning Signs
People suffering from diabetes need to be mindful of some warning signs that tell of gum disease. Some of these are bad breath or red, swollen gums.If your gums bleed after brushing or flossing itcould be another sign. Another sign is a change in the way your teeth fit together when you bite.This is caused by your gums loosening around the teeth which make the teeth not fit together right. Since there isn’t much, if any, the pain involved people tend to ignore these signs. They either think they have to brush “better” to toughen up their gums or they use mouthwash to hide the bad breath. This will not make the problem go away.What can be done?
If you have diabetes you should schedule a visit with a dentist as soon as possible. You need to do this to find out if you do have a diabetes-related gum disease.It’s critical for your health that you keep up regular dental visits. Your dentist can fix and often reverse tooth decay and gum disease if it’s diagnosed and treated early enough. By keeping regular dental appointments you’ll be helping your dentist get an early ‘heads up’ on any potential problems that often affects diabetics. He or she will check for signs such as dry mouth,ulcers or infections. These could all be a warning sign that something else is going on inside your body that needs to be attended to. You dentist might then recommend that you see your doctor if any of these signs show up during a routine dental exam.Is there anything else I should be doing?
If you have diabetes you can go online and use a risk assessment tool to gauge your level of risk for the disease.By answering a series of questions you can find out what risk you might be at for oral cancer, gum disease, and other serious oral health problems.Besides controlling your blood sugar, you should make sure you brush and floss at least once a day. If you smoke you definitely need to stop now!We at Fredericksburg & Montclair Family Dentistry will be happy to help you. please visit our website today to see the many services we offer.