Diabetes and Periodontal Disease

Periodontal patients present maintenance challenges, but when coupled with disease, such as diabetes, the challenges increase.  Diabetes is characterized by disorders metabolizing carbohydrates, protein, and fat.  Diabetic complications are related to blood sugar control.  Individuals with poorly controlled blood sugar levels have a higher incidence of periodontal disease among  other complications.

It’s not that diabetes causes periodontal disease; it just increases the likelihood of the development & progression of the disease.  Diabetes and periodontal disease are both chronic & incurable, but controllable.  The body’s ability to kill periodontal pathogens & repair damaged gingival tissue is decreased in hyperglycemic conditions.  Periodontal disease worsens blood sugar control by increasing insulin resistance; this prevents the transport of glucose from the blood vessels into the cells, thus creating the hyperglycemic condition.

For the above reasons, identifying & proactively treating gingivitis is extremely important in these patients.  The use of power toothbrushes, antimicrobial rinses, and interdental cleaners are among the preventive measures one can take to combat gingivitis & periodontal disease.

In summary, periodontal maintenance & daily plaque control are the two primary factors in determining the longevity of successful treatment results.

The above information is for general educational purposes only and does not constitute health or medical advice. Consult a qualified dentist/medical doctor to determine an individualized treatment plan.