Diabetes is a disease is which blood sugar levels are above normal. This can lead to serious health problems including heart disease, blindness, kidney failure, fungal and bacterial infection, nerve damage, dry mouth, and even leg or foot amputation.
Diabetes is NOT just a disease of blood sugar being too high. It’s associated with major problems of circulation and compromise of someone’s ability to heal.
Millions of people are afflicted, and only about half of them even know it!
When blood sugar gets too high, it’s VERY common to see an increase in gum disease.
Now, what’s even worse? Gum disease makes the diabetes worse, too!
It’s a very vicious circle that can ultimately lead to an early death.
With active diabetes comes more frequent urination and that depletes the body’s water levels. The consequence of that is a dry mouth. And dry mouth very significantly increases the risks for more cavities and gum disease.
There is no question: if you know someone with diabetes, they MUST have much more careful followup from their dentist. The dentist may even have to refer them to a specialist for advanced care.
Don’t be surprise if more frequent examinations and cleanings are called for. It’s almost the rule that if you have diabetes, you need to have your teeth cleaned four times a year. And we may very well not be talking about the simple quick polish type cleaning at all. This is complex, advanced care that must be accomplished in a very meticulous fashion for it to work properly.
And your dental office will also give you some homework to do on a daily basis.
Without that, it’s pretty likely you can kiss your teeth and your overall health goodbye.