The Importance Of Regular Dental Visits For Diabetics

If you have diabetes, then you probably see your physician on a regular basis for blood glucose monitoring and other diabetes-related testing. It is also important to you see your dentist regularly for oral examinations. Diabetes not only raises the risk for cardiovascular disease, stroke, poor circulation, and renal disease, but it can also cause problems with your oral cavity. Here are some reasons to see your dentist regularly if you have diabetes.

Predisposition To Oral Fungal Infections

Not only does diabetes cause elevated levels of glucose to infiltrate the blood, but it can also cause high amounts of glucose to settle inside the oral cavity. Fungi and yeast feed off glucose, and because of this, the mouth becomes a breeding ground for fungal infections in diabetics.

It is essential that you see your dentist on a regular basis to examine your oral cavity for signs of fungal infections. These signs include white patches on the tongue, throat, or floor of the mouth, which can bleed easily when scratched or otherwise disturbed. The areas surrounding the white patches may also feel irritated and become sensitive to hot or cold temperatures. If your oral examination reveals a fungal or yeast infection known as candidiasis, your dental professional will prescribe an antifungal medication or oral rinse. 

Poor Healing After Dental Procedures

Diabetes can cause poor healing after dental procedures. Long-standing or poorly managed diabetes raises the risk for diminished circulation, including the circulation inside your mouth. If you are anticipating oral surgery or other dental procedure, discuss your diabetes with your dentist.

He or she will monitor you more closely for subtle signs of infection or slowed healing at the procedure site. In addition to discussing your diabetes with your dental professional, let your physician know that you will be undergoing dental work. When blood sugar levels are tightly controlled, you will be less likely to experience slowed healing after your dental procedure.

Diabetes may also raise your risk for gingivitis and bleeding after tooth extraction. This risk is compounded if you take aspirin or prescription anticoagulant medications. If you are a diabetic, it is essential that you follow a strict oral hygiene routine of brushing and flossing to help lower your risk for gum disease. 

If you have diabetes, see your dental professional on a regular basis. When you get frequent dental examinations, diabetes-related oral problems can be recognized and treated early on so that they are less likely to progress.