What is gum disease?

Severe inflammation of the gums is called periodontal disease. Gums begin to recess from the teeth, which become optically elongated. Gum pockets that are present around the teeth are filled with bacterial plaque that is the main cause for disease. Advanced periodontal disease treat specialists called periodontists. Without treatment the infection progresses through time. Bone, which supports the teeth and holds them in place, is slowly dissolving and teeth start to wobble and finally fall out.

What problems can cause diabetes in the oral cavity?

Researches show that there is an increased prevalence of periodontal disease among those with diabetes. Complications of diabetes include heart disease, stroke, kidney disease, periodontal disease, etc. Just as diabetes can worsen the condition of existing periodontal disease, so can active periodontal disease worsen the situation of existing diabetes. This is therefore a two-way impact of both diseases. People with diabetes are more susceptible to bacterial infection and have a decreased ability to fight bacteria that can invade into the gums. Diabetes can besides worsening periodontal disease also cause pain, ulcers, infections of the oral cavity (oral candidiasis) and dry mouth.

How can diabetics care for their oral health?

Good oral health is an integral part of overall health, so it is important to properly and thoroughly brush, floss and regularly visit dentist every 6 months. Your dentist must be informed that you have diabetes, so you have to fill in a questionnaire about your systemic and oral health. You should avoid smoking and if you are wearing dentures, clean them properly everyday. It is necessary to control the level of blood sugar, so it is important to visit a doctor who will be able to advise and guide you during the treatment of diabetes. If the blood sugar is poorly controlled or too high, it is likely to happen, that the situation in the oral cavity may worsen through time. The higher is blood sugar, the harder it is to control its effects and consequences.

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