In the United States, 9.3% of the population is diagnosed with diabetes and it is estimated that an additional 8.1 million people in the country are living with undiagnosed diabetes. Diabetics need to be aware of the oral symptoms of diabetes, and learn how to protect their oral health. There are a lot of ways diabetes can impact oral health, and the best way to prevent those side effects and have a healthy mouth is to keep up with healthy habits and closely manage blood sugar levels. Gum Disease
Keeping blood sugar levels healthy helps control a diabetic’s risk of developing gum disease. This is especially important because any infection, including one of the gums, can raise blood glucose levels and further compound a diabetic’s biggest issue. Brushing twice a day and flossing once a day is a tried and tested routine for keeping gums healthy. Even when diabetics notice plaque or buildup on their teeth, a consistent brushing and flossing routine can still prevent gum disease from progressing to its later stage periodontitis. Every diagnosed diabetic should discuss oral care with diabetes to their dentist, and make a point to schedule cleanings and checkups every six months. Other Precautions
Diabetics should be aware of a few other common oral health problems. Some medications popular for diabetics to take can cause dry mouth, which leads to sores and cavities. Simply drinking more water or chewing sugarless gum is an easy way to combat this side effect and prevent permanent problems. Diabetics respond differently to infection -- heightened blood sugar levels allow bacteria to grow more rapidly, so it takes longer for the body to fight and work out an infection. Diabetics who also wear dentures are especially susceptible to infections in the mouth like oral thrush, which is caused by fungus. The diabetic body’s response to infection can slow healing from cuts or sores in the mouth, another important reason to stick to an oral care routine that keeps teeth and gums clean consistently.
Some diabetics encounter an issue that can be hard to prepare for. Changes in taste buds can cause foods to taste different. In this case, it is important to adjust your diet and try new foods. Some people encounter this problem and add more sugar and sweetness to compensate, but this only leads to more complications for diabetics. Talk to your doctor if you notice a consistent bad taste in your mouth, but adjusting to a healthy diet to manage diabetes will also ensure you can improve your smile and overall health!
In the United States alone every hour of every day someone loses their life to oral or oropharyngeal cancer. It is the cancer of the mouth and upper throat. Only forty percent of patients diagnosed will live longer than five years. Patients often end up suffering from facial disfigurement or trouble talking and eating. Its fatality is directly linked to its late-stage diagnosis. Dentists are often the first to identify oral cancer symptoms in patients, which is why offering oral cancer screenings is crucial. Early detection and prevention are key.
Symptoms of Oral Cancer
Dentists should provide their patients with information on the symptoms and indicators of oral cancer. If a patient has an abnormality in their mouth that does not improve or disappear after two to three weeks, they need to see a dental professional immediately. Urge your patients to perform self-checks and be vigilant of symptoms, such as: Sores or ulcers that do not heal with four…
Multiple Sclerosis and Oral Health
Multiple sclerosis, or MS, is a lifelong disease that affects your brain, spinal cord, and the optic nerves in your eyes. It causes problems with muscle control, balance, and vision, along with other every day body functions. Motor function and coordination are heavily affected, with muscle weakness and spasticity making everyday tasks like holding a toothbrush near impossible. Problems with coordination and fatigue also make it difficult to keep up with proper dental care. All of these complications result in MS patients being at a higher risk for dental diseases. The disease itself affects the teeth and gums on a biochemical level, along with the medications used for treatment.
The Relationship Between Multiple Sclerosis (MS) and Oral Health
There is a cause and effect relationship between MS and dental health. One of the main characteristics and symptoms of MS is heightened levels of inflammation. This happens as a result of the immune system deter…
Here's a quick note to let you know Dr. Stangebye and staff will be out of the office to celebrate the holiday weekend. Our office will be closed on Friday May 24th through Monday May 27th.
If you don't currently have an appointment scheduled, but need to see the doctor before the weekend, please call us immediately to get on the schedule. Otherwise, Dr. Stangebye will be happy to see your smile when he is back next Tuesday May 28th!