Managing The Effects Of Diabetes On Your Oral Health

This common health problem can have a knock on effect for teeth and gums.

Along with a rise in obesity in the population of the UK, diabetes is becoming more and more common; perhaps partially due to our often unhealthy diets. Diabetes can have a number of serious effects on your health and should not be taken lightly. Professional advice should be followed to treat or manage the disease.

It can also increase the risk of dental problems, especially gum disease. There are certain things that you can do, however, if you have diabetes, to prevent or at least reduce some of the effects of these problems.

Especially if you are a diabetic, it is important that you see both the dentist and the dental hygienist at the Clock Tower Dental Clinic on a regular basis. Whilst generally healthy patients may usually see a dentist no more often than every six months, we may suggest that you see us on a more regular basis if you have diabetes so that we can monitor for any potential oral health issues.

Here are some suggestions of our Epsom dental team which are designed to help diabetics manage their oral health:

  • Make sure to take very good care when you clean your teeth. Brush for a minimum of two minutes both morning and night, paying special attention to the gums. Also make sure to use dental floss. This will help to reduce at least some of the risks of gum problems.
  • If you have a significant problem, such as an abscess, don’t ignore it, but treat it as a dental emergency and try to see us as soon as possible. Issues such as an abscess can sometimes exacerbate poor glucose control which could have a knock on effect on your health.
  • Follow dietary advice from your doctor. Eating regularly and correctly will help to minimise the problems caused by diabetes.
  • Stop smoking if you currently do so. Diabetics are in a higher risk group for periodontitis so there is no point in increasing this risk by smoking.
  • If you wear dentures, make sure that you clean them really well every day to avoid thrush which can occur when blood sugar levels are high. Alternatively, discuss dental implants as a replacement for your dentures with one of our Epsom dentists.

All of the above can help you on the road to a healthier mouth, even if diabetes is a challenge. None however, are a substitute for receiving regular dental care. If you are new to the Epsom area and would like to register at our practice, please call the Clock Tower Dental Centre on 01372 720136. Please make sure to tell your dentist if you have diabetes, or any other significant ongoing illness.