Oral Care Tips for Patients With Diabetes

Maintaining good oral health is important for everyone, but it is especially important if you have diabetes. According to the American Dental Association, one in five cases of total tooth loss is linked to diabetes. 

November is Diabetes Awareness Month. To recognize this month, Mark Ranzinger, DDS, and his compassionate dental team at Blakeney Dental in Charlotte, North Carolina, want to provide some oral care tips for patients with diabetes. 

Men, women, and children with diabetes are more prone to developing dental issues. If you have diabetes, read on to discover some useful tips you can incorporate into your daily dental routine. 

How are diabetes and oral health problems linked?

High blood sugar levels can weaken your immune system. And with a weakened immune system, your body could find it harder to fight off oral bacterial infections. As a result, you could face a higher risk of developing oral health problems, including:

Gingivitis

Gingivitis, which makes gums red and inflamed, is the first stage of gum disease.

Periodontitis

Left untreated, gingivitis can lead to periodontitis, a more advanced, irreversible form of gum disease that can lead to tooth loss.

Dry mouth

Dry mouth can lead to mouth ulcers and tooth decay.

Thrush

Thrush is a fungal infection of the mouth and tongue that commonly occurs in people who frequently take antibiotics. Thrush fungus thrives on the high sugar levels in the saliva of people who have uncontrolled diabetes.

Burning mouth syndrome

This syndrome usually results in a scalding sensation on the tongue, though it can affect your lips, gums, palate, throat, and whole mouth.

Poor healing

Uncontrolled diabetes can also lead to poor healing of the tissue in your mouth.

The warning signs of declining oral health

When you have diabetes, it’s important to know the warning signs of a dental concern, since you’re more susceptible to oral health problems. The sooner you address it, the less likely it will be to become a more complex issue that requires extensive dental work, such as crowns, bridges, implants, or dentures

Common warning signs of declining oral health include:

If you have any of these symptoms, start with professional dental cleanings at Blakeney Dental, and Dr. Ranzinger will help you create a dental plan so you can keep your mouth and overall health in better shape. 

Tips for reducing oral problems that you can start today

Here are some general tips that you can follow right now to start making a difference:

The first time you come to Blakeney Dental, if you have oral health symptoms, such as gingivitis, Dr. Ranzinger may recommend a dental deep cleaning. This removes the plaque and tartar from along your gums and can help reverse the earliest signs of gum disease. Then Dr. Ranzinger will establish a regular schedule for you to follow, so he can continue to check your progress and help restore your mouth to optimal health.

Controlling diabetes will not only help your teeth and gums, but it can have a positive effect on your overall health and wellness. To learn more, book an appointment online or over the phone with Blakeney Dental today.

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