/publications/issue/2003/2003-06/2003-06-7267

Diabetes and Gum Disease

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Studies are showing that if diabetics? blood sugar is out of control, they are more likely to develop tooth and gum disease. The high sugar levels in the mouth help harmful germs to grow and can lead to periodontal disease.

Researchers from the University at Buffalo found that even when participants who had high rates of both diabetes and gum disease lost all their teeth, their blood sugar levels did not fall. The researchers discovered that the toothless participants had equal to or higher blood sugar levels, compared with participants with severe gum disease who still had their teeth. These results underscore the importance of prevention and early treatment of gum disease in people at risk for diabetes. Here are suggestions from dental experts on how patients with diabetes can take care of their teeth: