The Link Between Gum Disease & Dangerous Medical Conditions

You can have periodontal gum disease and not even know it.  Not everyone has symptoms like bleeding gums, tooth loss, or bad breath.

While you may be aware that gum disease is the number one cause of tooth loss and dentists treat it to protect your teeth, there is a lot more you need to know.

Periodontal disease is a bacterial infection and one of the primary sources of chronic inflammation in your body. Not only can this inflammation deplete your immune system, but it has been linked to many major medical diseases, as well. Conditions like:

Allergies, Alzheimer’s, Arthritis, Cancer, Depression, Diabetes, Digestive disorders, Fibromyalgia, Heart disease, Heart valve problems, Lupus, Multiple Sclerosis, Obesity, Osteoporosis, Pancreatitis, Parkinson’s, Psoriasis, Stroke, and more….

Taking care of your dental health is not just about teeth anymore. Preventing and treating bacteria related conditions in your mouth can protect your health too.

You can do this by brushing and flossing every day and seeing your dentist and hygienist at recommended intervals (minimum of twice a year). Some people, especially those with a history of gum disease, need to see their dentist more often.

If you are due or past due for a dental visit, we encourage you to come in. We will do our best to support you in staying healthy and keeping your smile healthy and happy.

Knoxville Family Dentistry (865) 922-1613

Diabetes and Gum Disease – A Two Way Street

diabetes and gum disease

If you have diabetes it is important to take care of your oral health and see your dentist regularly. Studies show that there is a link between diabetes and oral health that is like a two way street.

1-Infections in your mouth like gum disease can contribute to the onset or worsening of diabetes. They can also impact your ability to keep your blood sugar at healthy levels.

2-High blood sugar caused by diabetes feeds the bacteria in your mouth putting you at a higher risk for periodontal gum disease, infections, cavities, and other dental problems. 

To keep this dangerous cycle under control, it is important to take care of both your teeth and overall health:

  • Do your best to keep your blood sugar levels under control
  • Be sure to let your dentist know about your diabetes
  • Brush and floss daily
  •  Visit your dentist and dental hygienist as often as they recommend. They may want to see you more often due to your diabetes.
  • Keep in mind that healing may take a little longer
  • Check with your medical doctor before major dental treatment, especially for gum disease. If your diabetes is not controlled, non-urgent treatment may need to be postponed or the doctor may want to alter your medication for that day.

Dental care is an important part of your diabetic self-care.  You can be proud of going to the dentist and minimizing any negative impact poor oral health would have on your diabetes.

If you are in the Knoxville area and would like to find a dentist who is familiar with helping diabetics receive the best dental care possible, give us a call at (865) 922-1613.

We promise to take great care of you!