5 WAYS DIABETES AFFECTS YOUR DENTAL HYGIENE AND HEALTH
Most of the time, diabetes does not show symptoms until and unless the condition has got severe. Every year, there are a good number of people who contract the disease but are not aware of it. As per a record, as many as 9.3% of people staying alone in the USA are suffering from diabetes and each year, this count is increasing. (Source: Mouthhealthy)
Diabetes, thus, is no longer a rare condition.
There are two different types of diabetes that people suffer from. In the first type that is also known as Type 1, the body is not able to secrete enough amount of insulin that is responsible for controlling sugar in the body. In Type 2, on the other hand, the body stops responding to insulin.
Both the cases are critical and hence it is important to take the condition seriously. One of the most common problems of diabetes is that it starts affecting different parts of the body such as kidney, liver, and even your teeth.
Ways how diabetes affect dental health
When you have caught diabetes, it will start showing symptoms in different ways. But there are some symptoms that may be confused to be normal problems such as getting excessively thirsty. But if such symptoms along with others such as frequent urinating continue, it is an ideal thing to check with a doctor and get a blood test done.
Coming to the point of dental health, there are a number of oral symptoms too that can be noticed.
1. Tooth Decay
The mouth contains different bacteria types that secrete a kind of acid. This acid works on the food items with high sugar and starch that again affects the tooth surface, resulting in cavities. The saliva in the mouth, on the other hand, helps in neutralizing the impact of such bacteria and hence keeping the risk of cavities much reduced. But due to the condition of diabetes, the mouth reduces the secretion of saliva and hence the bacteria get much more active and there is always a high risk of getting cavities.
As mentioned earlier, diabetes leads to lesser saliva secretion and hence your system is not able much to fight against the bacteria. Whenever any food gets stuck up in your teeth and you forget to floss it out, it gets hardened due to a lesser amount of saliva in the mouth.
This hard substance starts irritating the gums and often leads to swollen or bleeding gums that lead to the condition of gingivitis.
If gingivitis is ignored, it can lead to higher problems such as periodontitis. This is a condition where gingivitis starts destroying the gum internally and may even reach out to the bone. Slowly, the gum and the bone leave contact with the tooth and it falls out.
Diabetic people are prone to periodontitis because such people have reduced immunity towards infection and bacteria attack. Thus, when the first symptom of swollen gum or bleeding gum is noticed, it is important to check up with the dentist and should also get a blood test done.
4. Tooth Staining
Diabetes not only reduces your immunity but also acts in a negative way on your tooth enamel. Thus, it can have a heavy impact even on the appearance of the teeth. Often damaging of the enamel can lead to stained teeth. When the stained teeth are due to diabetes, it may not get cleaned through brushing. If the condition is something like this, it is needed to check the dentist and get a blood test immediately.
5. Bad Breath
There can also be symptoms that may not seem noticeable to you but can put a bad impact in front of others such as the bad breath. Due to the high amount of infection, the gums may lead to bad breath. Often trying normal remedies such as regular cleaning or trying fresheners may not help in treating bad breath, if it is due to diabetes. If such is the case, this is again a situation to meet up with the dentist at the earliest.
How to take care of your dental health while you have diabetes?
If you are diagnosed with diabetes, you can simply take medication and the doctor’s suggestions to keep it under control. When diabetes is under control, you may notice an improvement in your dental health too. But also there are some important habits listed by the Mayo Clinic that can be helpful.
a. Take all the necessary steps to keep your diabetes under control
b. Make a habit of brushing twice a day
c. Do not forget to floss each day
d. Let your dentist know about your diabetic condition and visit the clinic at regular frequencies
e. Make sure to check out any gum related symptoms
f. Stay away from unhealthy habits such as smoking
Diabeteshas been affecting a lot many people not only in the USA but across the world. The disease starts affecting different parts of the body and also can take a toll on your dental health. Tracking the condition early and maintaining it well can always help in keeping you safe from such dental situations. Also, taking proper care of dental health can also help in keeping your whites healthy even when you have diabetes.
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