How Diabetes Can Affect Your Oral Health

We know diabetes affects your blood sugar, kidneys, other organs, and overall health, but how does it affect your mouth?

Dental Hygiene

If your blood sugar is uncontrolled, oral health problems become more likely. Uncontrolled blood sugar impairs your white blood cells, which are the body's main defense against bacterial infections. Bacteria that reside in the mouth due to plaque or tartar buildup can be more serious if you have diabetes. People with diabetes are at special risk for gum disease, an infection of the gum and bone that hold the teeth in place. Periodontal disease can lead to painful chewing difficulties and even tooth loss.

Dental Care and Diabetes

It's essential to follow good dental hygiene habits and to pay close attention to any changes in your oral health when you have diabetes. Make sure you keep your blood sugar levels as close to normal as possible, and that you keep your dentist informed about the status of your diabetes at each visit. Your diabetes doctor should also be kept informed of any changes in your oral health.

Potential Dental Problems

Don't be discouraged if you have diabetes.  You may be at risk for some of the following medical conditions:

Dry mouth
Gum inflammation
Poor or slow oral healing
Burning of the mouth or tongue

How Do I Know If I Have Sensitive Teeth?

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