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Gum Disease and Diabetes Are Closely Linked

When you have your routine dental cleaning and exam, you may think your dentist is only checking on your teeth and oral health. While we do evaluate your oral health, the dentists at Belmont Dental Group are also looking for clues about the rest of your health as well! The reason? Dental care is closely related to the care of your entire body.

For example, Diabetes and Gum Disease are strongly connected. Gum disease can make your diabetes worse, and your diabetes may make your gum health suffer. Over our careers, several times we’ve been the first person to suspect diabetes in a patient because of what we saw in their mouth!

Diabetes is one of the most common, and most serious, diseases. Over time, high blood sugars can ruin any vital organ and impair organ systems, e.g. your heart AND blood vessels. High blood sugars also increase the sugar level in your saliva, creating an environment that harmful bacteria love. This can increase the bacteria population in your mouth, leading to gum inflammation.

Diabetics heal poorly, and what might be a small amount of gum inflammation in one person would be much worse in a diabetic. Gums that are inflamed, swollen, and infected can start to leak that harmful bacteria into the bloodstream. This bloodstream bacteria can then make your diabetes worse, along with increasing the risk for heart attacks and strokes.

The good news is that you can treat these conditions to improve your overall health. When gum disease is treated, patients gain an improved ability to control their blood sugar levels. This reduces the need for care and the risk of complications. Similarly, taking control of diabetes can reduce the risk of gum disease.

When you’re ready to find a team committed to your health as well as your beautiful smile, Belmont Dental Group is ready to meet you! We cover all kinds of dental care, from teeth cleaning to cosmetic dentistry to emergency care, and we believe in helping our patients be partners in their own dental health. Call us today at (617) 484-2431 or contact us through our website for a consultation.