What to Know About Diabetes and Oral Health
Over 29.1 million Americans, or 9.3% of the population, have diabetes.
Diabetes is a metabolic disease that causes high blood sugar, due to not producing insulin (type 1 diabetes), or not producing enough insulin for proper function or the cells do not react to insulin (type 2 diabetes). Diabetes can harm many parts of the body (including eyes and kidneys). However, many people do not realize that diabetes can also affect your mouth’s health, too.
- People with diabetes are at higher risk for gum disease, which can lead to tooth loss. Smoking will further increase this risk.
- Dry mouth is also a common symptom of uncontrolled diabetes. Dry mouth can lead soreness, ulcers and infections in the mouth.
- People with diabetes and those who frequently take antibiotics are more prone to developing oral thrush, a fungal infection, which is typically treated with anti-fungal medications.
Since people with diabetes have a greater risk for these dental problems, it is key to maintain good oral hygiene and address changes immediately with your dentist.