Your oral health says a lot about you. A healthy mouth can deliver confidence with a smile, but did you know it’s tied to your overall health as well? In fact, recent research suggests that oral health can be linked to diabetes. Learn more about the risk factors and what you can do to maintain a healthy smile.
A pre-existing condition such as diabetes may leave you more vulnerable to oral health issues such as gum disease. When blood sugar levels are not controlled, levels of glucose in the saliva can increase. This makes it easier for bacteria to build up and grow, leaving you more susceptible to gum disease and tooth decay. Studies show that almost 64% of patients with diabetes may have inflamed or swollen gums compared to just 50% of those without diabetes.
Current data reveals that periodontal disease is more common amongst people with diabetes. That’s because elevated glucose levels can lead to other health issues as well, and your mouth is directly tied to your health. Common symptoms associated with gum disease include:
- Swollen or sensitive gums
- Bleeding gums
- Receding gums
- Bad breath or bad taste in the mouth
- Loose teeth
Gum disease occurs when plaque accumulates on teeth, with time this plaque can become more toxic and can lead to inflammation and infection of the gums. Since diabetes patients are more susceptible to gum disease, it is even more important to pay attention to your oral hygiene routine.
- Brush at least twice a day to effectively remove plaque and keep gums healthy.
- Switch to a gum health toothpaste like Crest Gum Detoxify, its activated foam formula seeks out and neutralizes harmful plaque bacteria around the gum line for clinically proven healthier gums.
- Floss at least once a day.
- Rinse with antimicrobial mouthwash to prevent plaque growth in-between brushings. Look for a rinse that’s alcohol-free to limit gum irritation and mouth dryness.
- See your dental professional regularly for cleanings and checkups.
A thorough oral care routine can help keep your smile healthy and vibrant, which in turn, can help you maintain your overall health as well.
Albandar JM, Tinoco EM. Global epidemiology of periodontal diseases in children and young persons. Periodontology 2000 2002;29: 153-76.
American Dental Association (ADA): Oral-systemic Health
Working Together to Manage Diabetes: A GUIDE FOR PHARMACY, PODIATRY, OPTOMETRY, AND DENTISTRY