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Say No to Sugar On Diabetes Day

Did you know your teeth can show signs of diabetes?

Diabetes is the result of having too much glucose (sugar) in the blood for a long time. Having a high blood sugar levels is known to be damaging to the heart, eyes, kidneys, blood vessels and causes tooth and gum problems[1]. This is because high levels of glucose in your blood promotes bacteria growth. From here, your gums can swell, turn red and bleed during brushing.

These problems can lead to periodontitis[2]; a serious infection found within the gums and bone that hold teeth in place. If left untreated, the infection can worsen and consequently cause gums to deteriorate and recede in appearance.

Signs your teeth and gums may show damage from diabetes[3]:

  • Bleeding gums
  • Red, sore, swollen gums
  • Loose or sensitive teeth
  • Bad breath
  • Receding gums (teeth look longer)
  • A different-feeling bite
  • Denture or false teeth no longer fit well

How can I promote healthy oral hygiene on World Diabetes Day?

Say no to sugar Cut down or avoid sugar altogether if you can. This helps individuals keep their blood glucose levels as close to normal as possible.

Brush and floss daily Together, brushing and flossing removes leftover food particles and prevents plaque building up on your teeth.

Look for signs Prevention is the best tactic to fight diabetes. Gum disease can start at any age, so children and teenagers who suffer from diabetes are at greater risk. Detect it as soon as possible to fight gum disease at the earliest stage.

Dental assessment Visit your dentist for a dental assessment every six months. This ensures your teeth receive a professional clean and it also gives your dentist an opportunity to look for signs of gum disease as early as possible.

If your dentist discusses a problem with you during a dental assessment, it’s important that you take care of it right away. Don’t forget to let your dentist know if you have diabetes or are experiencing any symptoms so they can focus on improving your oral hygiene immediately.

        

References:

Staying Well with Diabetes, AlphaPharm, 2008, Australian Diabetes Council, 30 Jan. 2011 < http://www.australiandiabetescouncil.com/Resources/PDFs/STAYING_WELL.aspx>.


[1] Staying Well with Diabetes, AlphaPharm, 2008, Australian Diabetes Council, 30 Jan. 2011 < http://www.australiandiabetescouncil.com/Resources/PDFs/STAYING_WELL.aspx>.

[2] Staying Well with Diabetes, AlphaPharm, 2008, Australian Diabetes Council, 30 Jan. 2011 < http://www.australiandiabetescouncil.com/Resources/PDFs/STAYING_WELL.aspx>.

[3] Staying Well with Diabetes, AlphaPharm, 2008, Australian Diabetes Council, 30 Jan. 2011 < http://www.australiandiabetescouncil.com/Resources/PDFs/STAYING_WELL.aspx>.

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