As we all know, diabetes can affect major systems in our body like eyes, nerves, kidneys, and heart and leads to complications like kidney failure, eye problems and so on. But, how many of you know the fact that diabetes can affect your mouth and can lead to several oral problems?
Diabetes increases your risk of oral problems like cavities, gum diseases (periodontal), mouth ulcers and so on. It is a proven fact that gum diseases, teeth problems, and other oral problems are few among the list of diabetes complications.
Let us know discuss how diabetes affects your oral health, what are the symptoms you experience and also about few ways to improve your oral health and keep your mouth healthy.
Overview of diabetes dental problems
Diabetes is a condition where people have high glucose levels in their body fluids and this too much sugar in the body affects your mouth and lead to infections, pain, and other oral problems. High sugar levels present in your saliva leads to the growth of harmful bacteria in your mouth. This unhealthy and harmful bacteria present in your mouth combines with the food and forms as a sticky film and coats your teeth. This sticky thing is usually referred to as plaque. This plaque if not removed properly, turns into tartar and sticks above your gum line and makes it difficult for you to clean and brush your teeth properly. This tarter make your gums red, inflamed and also leads to haemorrhage from gums. All these above are the symptoms of a condition called gingivitis (unhealthy or inflamed gums).
If this gingivitis is not treated properly or left untreated leads to a serious condition called periodontitis. Periodontitis is a condition where gaps form between your teeth as the gums gets pulled away from your teeth. These spaces or pockets get infected and in long run due to infection both your bones and tissues that hold your teeth in their particular place start to break down. If periodontitis is left untreated or in severe cases, your bones, tissues and even gums gets destroyed and your teeth may become loose and you may also get your teeth removed.
How to know if we have diabetes mouth problems?
Diabetes increases your risk of several oral problems and your risk of these oral problems is higher if you’re over 50 years of age. People with diabetes should consult an expert if they experience diabetes mouth symptoms like dry mouth, cavities, red, swollen gums, tenderness in gums along with haemorrhage from gums. People with periodontitis face symptoms like bad breath, gums that have pulled back from teeth and loose teeth.
In few cases, people may not experience any symptoms until they have serious damage. Hence to eliminate these risks, people with diabetes should consult their dentist frequently and get their teeth checked.
Ways to keep your mouth healthy?
A superior way to keep your teeth and gums healthy is to control your sugar levels. Here are few steps through which you can keep your mouth healthy
- Brush your teeth twice a day and also practice flossing and rinsing regularly
- Use a soft toothbrush and change your brush every 3 months.
- Clean the dentures properly if you are wearing any and also take them out at nights.
- Consult your dentist if you experience any above discussed diabetes mouth symptoms.
- Do not neglect your symptoms or your doctor’s advice, follow their instructions carefully.
- Most importantly quit smoking, as it raises your risk of gum diseases and other oral problems.