Oral Health: Dental Management and Care for Diabetics
Diabetic patients are vulnerable to several health complications, including their teeth and gums. However, with the right management and care, you can improve your oral health if you are a diabetic patient.
Regardless of your diabetes type, it is essential to control your blood sugar level. Any carelessness here will expose you to the risk of:
This advanced gum disease destroys the bone and soft tissues supporting your teeth. As a result, your jawbone and gums may separate from your teeth, causing them to loosen and fall out eventually.
Periodontitis can be severe for diabetic patients because they have lower resistance to infection and slow healing. You must ensure you get dental cleanings regularly to improve your control of blood sugar and prevent diabetes.
Diabetic patients have lower fighting ability against bacteria. Negligence, in this regard, may cause the tartar (hardening of your gumline) to form. If you allow tartar and plaque to remain for long on your gums around supporting the base, they will swell and bleed easily.
We call this condition gingivitis, and diabetic patients can prevent this with regular flossing, brushing, and plaque removal.
Thrush is an oral condition more common in diabetic patients. An infection arises due to yeast Candida albicans. If you develop thrush, you will generally experience painful red and white patches inside your mouth. The best management for thrush is maintaining good oral hygiene.
Dental Care for Diabetics
If you have diabetes, here are a few practices to ensure you maintain good oral health throughout:
- Monitoring your blood sugar level is key to good oral health. You must keep your blood sugar level firmly under control by following all the instructions of your doctor. This practice will reduce your chances of developing gingivitis.
- Flossing is a critical practice too. You must floss at least once a day to remove plaque and tartar buildup under your gumline and between your teeth. If you cannot pass dental floss between your teeth, then try using the waxed variety.
- Brushing twice a day is compulsory too. It is better to brush after meals and snacks also. Use fluoride toothpaste and a soft-bristled toothbrush. Harsh or vigorous brushing may irritate your gums, so avoid doing that. For arthritis patients or other problems, an electric toothbrush may be helpful for thorough brushing.
- You must primarily inform your dentist that you are a diabetic patient each time you for a visit. It is also essential to provide your diabetic history and your endocrinologist’s contact information to your dentist. It is also necessary to have at least two dentist visits annually for professional check-ups, X-rays, and cleaning.
- As a diabetic patient, you must avoid smoking because it raises the risks of diabetes-related health problems. This also includes gum diseases and even loss of teeth eventually.
- It would help if you did not ignore any signs of infection or gum diseases. If you experience any pain in the mouth, bleeding gums, swelling, redness, loose teeth, or even dry mouth, it is better to consult your dentist immediately.
Once you develop diabetes, it becomes your lifelong commitment to managing it efficiently. This includes oral care to keep your gums and teeth healthy while keeping your blood sugar under control.
Keep your gums and teeth healthy, schedule a visit with our dental staff by calling 718-246-5700 or schedule online.