Many people suffering from diabetes realize that periodontal disease is a lesser-known complication. This is especially true when diabetes is not properly treated and under control.

The Facts About Periodontal Disease

You may hear it called periodontitis or gum disease. Periodontal disease is progressive and if left untreated, can lead to tooth loss. Beginning as a bacterial infection in the gingival tissue surrounding the teeth, it deepens gum pockets and destroys tissues leading to receding gums. It results in the condition attacks the underlying bone tissue.

Symptoms of the disease include swollen and tender gums, bad breath, loss of teeth. Your dentist can examine your gums and diagnose periodontal disease and provide treatment for the condition.

The Facts About Diabetes

Diabetes is a condition caused by an excess of glucose, or sugar, in the blood. This serious condition can lead to other serious conditions like heart disease and stroke.

When Diabetes Goes Untreated

Those suffering from diabetes tend to be extremely thirsty, experience frequent urination, weight loss, and fatigue. It can also affect your dental health. This is because it leads to dry mouth, cavities, gingivitis, hampered taste, slow wound healing, increased oral infections, and early teeth eruption for children suffering from the condition.

Explaining the Correlation Between the Two

Those with periodontal disease can have increased blood sugar. Insulin taken to treat the disease can be hindered by the chemicals produced by periodontal bacteria. These chemicals can also target insulin- producing cells in the pancreas.

Those with diabetes experience thickening of the blood vessels which impedes the delivery of nutrients and removal of waste. This results in waste remaining in the mouth, weakening gum tissue, and increasing the chance of infection and gum disease.

If you are a smoker, the use of tobacco can slow down healing, increase the chance of periodontal disease. This is especially true of smokers who are diabetic are more than twenty times more likely to also get periodontal disease.

Getting Help from Your Dentist

Those with diabetes should visit their dentist twice a year for a checkup and cleaning. Treating gum disease helps to improve blood sugar. There are periodontal treatments that lower the HbA1c, hemoglobin molecule blood test, by up to 20% over 6 months. Using medical and family history, dental x-rays, and exams, your dentist can assess risk factors for developing periodontal disease. If you are diagnosed with diabetes and periodontitis, your dentist can work with your physician to properly manage both conditions.

Here at The Office of Dr. Stephen A. Coates, DDS, Inc. we can perform a deep scaling, removing tartar from the teeth along the gumline. We can also perform root planing, smoothing down the root of the tooth to eliminate bacteria. Dr. Coates can determine if you are a good candidate for the new therapy Perio Protect™. This non-invasive system helps to treat inside periodontal pockets that are hard to reach. We can also provide you with the best way to take care of your oral health at home.

Call us now to book an appointment at 562-434-6414 or request an appointment online.