Type 1 diabetes is a chronic, lifelong disease that is typically diagnosed in children and teenagers. If the blood glucose levels aren’t controlled properly, the risk of developing gum and teeth problems increases for them.
A few oral health problems associated with Type 1 Diabetes are thrush, dry mouth, cavities and gum disease.
How Diabetes affects gum disease:
- Uncontrolled Type I Diabetics are at a higher risk for gum disease.
- Severe gum disease can affect blood sugar.
- Diabetics have a decreased ability to fight bacteria that invade the gums.
- A dry mouth can exacerbate the side effects of diabetes, which will then lead to an increase in glucose levels, wreaking havoc on the body.
- Having a dry mouth, especially as a diabetic, can lead to rampant tooth decay, which means blood sugar increases as the body tries, and fails, to fight infection.
- Sometimes if the blood glucose levels are higher than they should be, the result is dry mouth.
Preventing Dental Complications Linked to Diabetes
The first step is keeping the child’s blood glucose level under control. If blood sugar is high, the sugar can appear in the saliva. Sugar is a breeding ground for bacteria, which can cause gum disease and other oral health problems.
According to the American Dental Association, it’s recommended to brush teeth at least twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste because that helps protect the teeth against tooth decay Flossing at least once a day is recommended as well because it helps remove the plaque and food particles between the teeth. Lastly, make sure to make a trip to the dentist twice a year to ensure there are no problems arising with the teeth and/or gums. Be sure to notify the dentist that your child has diabetes so that they can check the mouth for swollen gums, dry patches, bleeding and more.
If you’re looking for a gentle children’s dentist, contact the team at Loveable Smiles today. 972-231-0585