Diabetes, Dental Diseases, and Gum Problems

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Unmanaged diabetes leads to high blood sugar levels in the mouth fluids facilitating the growth of bacteria that causes gum diseases. Infections from untreated periodontal diseases can cause the blood sugar to go high making it harder to manage and control diabetes.

How can diabetes affect the mouth?

The mouth consists of your teeth, gums, jaw, and tissues such as the tongue, the roof and bottom of the mouth, and the inside part of the cheeks. The bacteria that grow from the mixture of saliva and excess glucose combines with food to form a soft, sticky film referred to as plaque.

The plaques are formed when a person eats foods that contain starches and sugars, some may cause cavities and tooth decay and others may cause bad breath and gum diseases.

Mouth problems caused by diabetes.

The most common mouth problems brought by diabetes are periodontitis, gingivitis, oral burning and thrush also referred to as candidiasis.

Periodontitis is a gum disease characterized by pus between the teeth and gums, red swollen and bleeding gums, bad breath that won’t go away, loose permanent teeth, changes in teeth structure, and long-lasting infection between the teeth and gums. It can be treated by deep cleaning at the dentist, medicine from the dentist, or gum surgery.

Gingivitis is unhealthy or inflamed gums; its symptoms are red swollen and bleeding gums can be treated by daily brushing and flossing or regular cleansings at the dentist.

Oral burning also referred to as xerostomia, is a lack of saliva in the mouth making the tooth to decay or gum diseases. Its symptoms are dry feeling in the mouth, rough tongue, cracked lips, and problems in chewing, eating, and swallowing. For its treatment, one is advised to take the medicine that keeps the mouth wet as prescribed by the doctor or dentist.

Thrush is a growth of naturally occurring fungus that the body cannot control, symptoms are white or red patches on gums, cheeks, tongue, and the mouth roof. Prescribed medicine from a doctor or dentist can help to kill the fungus.

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