Diabetes and Dentistry: Any Relation?

August 18, 2011 in Dental Education

There is a ton of information out there about diabetes. Most people understand that it is a serious disease that can make a huge impact on someone’s life. Recognizing and diagnosing this disease as early as possible may make the difference in one’s future. Some of the early signs and symptoms of diabetes often show up in people’s mouths first.

Periodontal disease or “gum disease” is often associated with diabetes. There is a two edged sword with patients who have diabetes and periodontitis: both make each other worse. It is known that diabetes may make a person have a difficult time healing from infections. If a diabetic patient begins having gingivitis and early stages of periodontitis, their body’s immune system may not be able to heal in a proper way. The gum disease may get worse and cause major damage to their mouth. On the other edge of the sword is the impact on diabetes that gum disease plays. Periodontal infections that are not treated may make it more difficult for someone’s blood sugar levels to be controlled. Periodontitis is often a chronic disease that floods the body’s blood system with toxins from the bacteria involved in the infection. This presence of infection could make it very difficult to keep a proper blood-glucose balance in diabetic patients.

It is highly recommended to see your dentist for regular exams so that we can check for any signs and symptoms of gum disease. Before the fight against diabetes begins it must first be diagnosed. Seeing your dentist could be a first step toward a diagnosis of diabetes.

For more information about diabetes visit these sites:
American Diabetes Association
The American Dental Association

Leave a Reply