Linking Periodontal Disease and Diabetes

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We just discussed the link between heart disease, stroke and periodontal disease, so it may be obvious that gum disease can also be a cause of diabetes. Studies have reported this oral problem as the sixth complication of diabetes. The accumulation of bacteria that builds into plaque which progresses into gingivitis, a precursor to periodontal disease.

Diabetes is the result of too much sugar in the blood or a high level of blood glucose. Glucose is important for your health because it contributes to the source of energy needed to make up muscle and tissue cells, especially your brain tissue. Two main factors contribute to your glucose levels: what you eat and your liver. Sugar in the bloodstream ultimately makes its way into cells with the help of insulin.

Type 1 diabetes can develop at any age (more commonly diagnosed at a young age), and Type 2 can come at any age but is more likely to in adulthood. Diabetes and gum disease are both very common diseases in older individuals, especially those in their 40s. Those with diabetes are more susceptible to gum disease than those who do not have it.

Severe gum disease can increase blood sugar when damaged gums (infected or missing a tooth) let sugar and bacteria into the bloodstream. If you already have diabetes, it makes it even harder to treat these infections.

If you have concerns about type 1 or type 2 diabetes, some signs to look for include the following:

– Sores that take a long time to heal
– Multiple or frequent infections in the gums or other parts of the body
– Blurred vision, irritability, fatigue
– Unexplained weight loss, extreme hunger or frequent urination

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, immediately seek a healthcare professional or reach out to your medical provider. They will be able to help determine whether you have diabetes. Then Dr. Nicholas and her team of specialists will help you restore your oral health by replacing any missing teeth or treating periodontal disease. If you are experiencing any pain in the mouth or jaw, be sure to reach out to us, so we can help determine the cause.

Palm Desert Center for Advanced Periodontics, Cosmetic, Sedation and Implant Dentistry wants to help you have your best smile, so give our office in Palm Desert, California, a call at 760-851-0314. We will be happy to set up a consultation to determine which treatment is ideal for you. We serve the people of Palm Desert, California, as well as La Quinta, Indian Wells, Rancho Mirage, Palm Springs and the neighboring communities of the Coachella Valley.