Diabetes plagues millions of Americans and affects the body in many ways. Oral health is one area many people overlook, which is why the staff at Jason H. Ikeno, DDS, in Waipahu, HI, wants to explain the connection diabetes has with it. Gum disease, specifically, is a condition many people with diabetes face, which is why it’s important to take preventative measures and work with your dentist to manage your well-being.
How Are Diabetes and Oral Health Linked?
Studies show there are over 30 million cases of diabetes in the U.S., with 1.5 million new ones being diagnosed each year. This group of diseases occurs when too much sugar is in the blood, with a direct correlation to insulin and blood sugar processing. The most immediate link with oral health is side effects. People with diabetes have more trouble creating saliva; because of this, their teeth aren’t cleaned as regularly, making them more susceptible to decay. This can also lead to bleeding gums and wounds that are slow to heal. Gum disease, however, is what people with diabetes are most at risk of. Blood-sugar-related issues increase the risk of gum disease, which makes blood sugar more difficult to regulate and is why it’s important to work closely with your dentist.
How Can Diabetics Prevent Oral Health Issues?
Effective brushing and flossing are essential for oral care, but it’s also important to closely follow a diet that positively affects your blood sugar. Eat low-sugar foods, which are healthy for your teeth, and avoid acidic foods that can wear down enamel. You should also visit your dentist regularly so they can check for any issues, especially if you’re at risk of gum disease. Many of these factors will have a positive effect on diabetes management as well, leading to a better quality of life.
Whether you’re suffering from diabetes or just need a regular checkup, turn to a dentist at Jason H. Ikeno, DDS. They offer comprehensive general and cosmetic dentistry services and are committed to helping patients effectively manage their oral health. Call (808) 676-1520 today to schedule an appointment, and visit their website to learn about their family dentistry services.