The theme of World Health Day 2016, on 7th April, is to increase the awareness of the rise in diabetes and its consequences.
For people with diabetes one of these consequences can be problems with teeth and gums. Therefore it is very important if you are a diabetes sufferer that you follow a very thorough programme of oral care at home and that you visit your dentist regularly.
The number of people living with diabetes has almost quadrupled since 1980.
Common oral health care problems that are linked to diabetes include; tooth decay, periodontal or gum disease, dry mouth, infections.
Mouth bacteria thrive on sugar, high blood glucose levels can also result in more glucose in your saliva meaning that diabetes sufferers can experience a higher level of plaque. A build-up of bacteria and plaque can mean tooth decay and gum disease.
Diabetes can reduce the body’s resistance to infection and slows down the healing process making diabetes sufferers more prone to gum disease.
A dry mouth is a side effect of diabetes and that can increase the levels of bacteria in the mouth as saliva acts to wash away these bacteria. Also constant dryness will irritate the soft tissues in the mouth making them painful and inflamed.
A lack of saliva in the mouth and increased blood sugar levels can also lead to the candidiasis infection (more commonly known as Thrush).
A few simple steps can make all the difference in combatting these side effects and keeping your mouth and teeth healthy
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