Diabetes & oral health: How to keep your teeth healthy Diabetes & oral health: How to keep your teeth healthy
Every year a lot of people are diagnosed with diabetes, which leads to a series of changes, in lifestyle, especially diet; and this can... Diabetes & oral health: How to keep your teeth healthy

Every year a lot of people are diagnosed with diabetes, which leads to a series of changes, in lifestyle, especially diet; and this can be hard to adjust to. What one doesn’t realise is that diabetes can cause various other ailments related to oral health, such as tooth decay, periodontal gum disease and salivary gland dysfunction.

Dr. Atul Aundhekar, iCARE Clinics says: “Maintaining a personalised diet is crucial when diagnosed with diabetes, as one must control the inflow of glucose in their body. Diabetes can be controlled through good nutrition. But when not taken care of, high glucose levels found in the saliva of a diabetic individual can become a safe haven for bacteria, which then leads to several other oral health issues.”

Especially for those with diabetes, to ensure that your mouth does not turn into a breeding ground for bacteria, it is important to brush your teeth twice a day and floss at regular intervals. This will help keep development of plaque in check. It might seem like a very basic exercise, but such routine oral care can go a long way towards guaranteeing a healthier you.

If plaque is not kept in check it could harden into calculus or tartar. When tartar forms above your gum line, it becomes extremely difficult to clean in between your teeth, leading to a host of oral problems, such as chronic inflammation and periodontal disease (which is an infection of the gum and bone that hold your teeth together which could lead to loss of teeth). This disease has often been linked to diabetes as diabetes substantially reduces the body’s ability to defend itself from diseases.

In order to avoid these ailments one must keep a thorough and up-to-date account of medical history. Secondly, inform your dentist if you have been diagnosed with diabetes, as he or she might be able to offer further advice on how to maintain pristine oral health. A tailor-made diet plan will also play an important part in avoiding various oral health problems for those diagnosed with diabetes.

Bhuvana Acharya, Head Corporate Communications and CSR at Landmark Group commented on the issue saying:  “Diabetes is a prevalent condition in the contemporary society, owing to the unhealthy lifestyle. One must take appropriate measures to make sure it does not lead to further health issues. Good oral health is just one way of keeping aliments that come along with diabetes in check.”

When diabetic, what oral problems to look out for?

  • Bleeding gums
  • Inflammation in gums
  • Formation of pus between gums
  • Bad breath and taste in your mouth

If you experience any of the above symptoms, make sure you visit your dentist.

How to care for your teeth?

Constant oral health care at home is essential to preventing serious infections of the mouth. Brush twice a day and rinse your mouth with an antibacterial mouthwash suggested by medical professionals. You might want to visit your dentist every three months for a cleaning session, or a screening for diseases like periodontal disease. A constant lookout for oral disease could help in stifling the infection in its early stages.

Tips for good oral health care:

  • Brush regularly
  • Floss at regular intervals
  • Visit the dentist on a semi regular basis; don’t wait till the last minute
  • Maintain and monitor the flow of glucose from various sugary items

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