The link between oral health and diabetes

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Utilising a consistent oral hygiene routine benefits your body in more ways than just your mouth. It has been linked to lowering the risk of developing serious ailments, such as kidney disease, heart failure, ulcers and diabetes, just to name a few. In this article, we will be focusing on diabetes, and how you can exacerbate this disease through a lack of oral hygiene.

Diabetes can be a very a serious disease. It requires a lot of attention, and must be monitored to be kept under control. Therefore, it is important to take every precaution to keep yourself as healthy as possible if you are suffering with diabetes.

Oral health plays a very big part in the relationship with diabetes, as ignoring a proper dental care routine can make diabetes harder to keep under control. Diabetes can also create oral health problems on its own, so it is pivotal to keep up a consistent routine to avoid making any current health problems worse.

 

How does diabetes cause oral health problems?

 

There are multiple factors that relate to why diabetes causes oral health problems, rather than just one stand out reason, such as a good environment for oral health problems to develop, encouraging high levels of sugar interacting with the bacteria already in your mouth.

Diabetes causes extended periods of time where blood sugar levels are raised, which leads to an increased supply of sugar that interacts with the bacteria in the mouth. This is problematic as when the sugar interacts with the bacteria, it develops into sticky film that attaches onto the teeth, known as plaque. The acids in plaque attack and erode the teeth, leading to cavities and potentially gum disease if left untreated.

 

Another cause for oral health issues is down to a dry mouth. Those with diabetes often have less saliva in their mouth, and without the protection of a moist environment, and less enzymes to break down food products, the risk of developing oral health problems increases.

Developing oral health diseases such as periodontitis- an advanced stage of gum disease, is three times more likely to happen in someone suffering with diabetes. Diabetes can raise blood sugar levels which can make the disease even harder to control.

 

How can I reduce the risk of oral health problems?

The solution is simple yet effective, maintain a good oral hygiene routine. This applies to everybody, however diabetics especially should keep on top of this as a priority. Keeping your teeth and mouth clean and healthy is really beneficial to your body as a whole.

Once you have a regular oral hygiene routine in place, you can begin focusing on making lifestyle changes that will improve your overall health, such as a balanced diet, stopping smoking and making regular dental appointments to keep track of your oral health better.

If you are looking to improve your oral health, why not contact Loughborough dentists today to see how we can help you!