Did you know that diabetes can actually have an effect on your oral health? A lot of people don’t realize it, but diabetes can cause inflammation in your gums and can put you at an increased risk of gum disease, tooth loss, chronic dry mouth and other issues. Since you probably want to keep your pearly whites looking their best despite your diabetes diagnosis, it’s important to learn a few tooth-friendly tips for diabetic oral care.
Have Dental Work Done in a Timely Fashion
If you notice that you have a loose tooth, a cavity or another issue, it’s imperative to see your dentist right away.
Since your blood glucose levels make it difficult for your body to fight infection, a minor dental issue can quickly become much more serious. Therefore, it’s important not to put off your dental care, even if the problem doesn’t seem too serious.
Maintain Excellent At-Home Oral Hygiene
It’s imperative to take good care of your teeth and gums.
Brush your teeth two or three times a day for three minutes each, and use a good anti-cavity toothpaste. Floss your teeth daily, and keep mouthwash on hand to help get rid of bacteria. If you are unable to brush your teeth after a meal, make sure that you rinse your mouth out thoroughly with water.
Since your body isn’t able to fight infection as well as it could if you didn’t have diabetes, it’s important to be proactive against bacteria in your mouth.
See Your Dentist Regularly
Everyone should see their dentist twice a year to have their teeth cleaned and their mouths examined, but many people skip these important appointments or put them off for as long as possible. As a diabetic, you don’t have that luxury. It really is important to see your dentist twice per year. This will allow you to have your teeth cleaned and to have your mouth inspected for infection or disease.
Water is very important for all parts of your body, but it can be especially important for your mouth. Drinking water helps stimulate saliva production, which will help your mouth fight infection. Plus, since many diabetics suffer from dry mouth, keeping a water bottle close at hand and staying well-hydrated can help you feel more comfortable. Drinking water will also help wash away food particles, which could cause bacteria, and can help keep your mouth nice and clean.
As you can see, taking care of your teeth when you have diabetes isn’t much different from how everyone else practices oral care and hygiene. The main difference is that you need to be extremely diligent about your oral care; otherwise, what would otherwise be a minor issue can become a much more serious problem due to your increased risk of infection. Fortunately, if you follow these tips and work with your dentist and your physician, you shouldn’t have a hard time maintaining good oral health. Then, you can put your focus on other aspects of maintaining your disease and your health.