Diabetes and Oral Health – A Few Tips

DiabetesDentalTips Diabetes and Oral Health – A Few Tips

Diabetes is a variety of diseases which affect the hormone insulin. The pancreas is normally the organ which produces insulin, which helps manage the sugar and fat in our body, mainly by helping your body store the food.

Is There an Association Between Gum Disease and Diabetes?

For the nearly 30 million Americans who have diabetes, many may be surprised to learn about an unexpected complication associated with this condition. Research shows that there is an increased prevalence of gum disease among those with diabetes, adding serious gum disease to the list of other complications associated with diabetes, such as heart disease, stroke and kidney disease.

Is There a Two-Way Street?

Emerging research also suggests that the relationship between serious gum disease and diabetes is two-way. Not only are people with diabetes more susceptible to serious gum disease, but serious gum disease may have the potential to affect blood glucose control and contribute to the progression of diabetes. Research suggests that people with diabetes are at higher risk for oral health problems, such as gingivitis (an early stage of gum disease) and periodontitis (serious gum disease).

People with diabetes are at an increased risk for serious gum disease because they are generally more susceptible to bacterial infection, and have a decreased ability to fight bacteria that invade the gums. The Surgeon General’s Report on Oral Health states that good oral health is integral to general health. So be sure to brush and floss properly and see your dentist for regular checkups.

If I Have Diabetes, am I at Risk for Dental Problems?

If your blood glucose levels are poorly controlled, you are more likely to develop serious gum disease and lose more teeth than non-diabetics. Like all infections, serious gum disease may be a factor in causing blood sugar to rise and may make diabetes harder to control.

Other oral problems associated to diabetes include: thrush, an infection caused by fungus that grows in the mouth, and dry mouth which can cause soreness, ulcers, infections and cavities.

How Can I Help Prevent Dental Problems Associated with Diabetes?

First and foremost, control your blood glucose level. Then, take good care of your teeth and gums, along with regular checkups every six months. To control thrush, a fungal infection, maintain good diabetic control, avoid smoking and, if you wear them, remove and clean dentures daily. Good blood glucose control can also help prevent or relieve dry mouth caused by diabetes.

What Can I Expect at My Checkup? Should I Tell My Dental Professional About My Diabetes?

People with diabetes have special needs and your dentist and hygienist are equipped to meet those needs—with your help. Keep your dentist and hygienist informed of any changes in your condition and any medication you might be taking. Postpone any non-emergency dental procedures if your blood sugar is not in good control.

 

 

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Thanks Giving and Healthy Food tips

November_Give-Thanks-for-Cranberry-720x400 Thanks Giving and Healthy Food tipsHappy Thanksgiving Foods – Friendly Holidays

Thanksgiving is a time for family, old and new friends, and loved ones to get together and enjoy a hearty meal. It is also a holiday that can be dangerous for your dental health. This is because a lot of what we eat during this time can be hazardous to our dental health. This can include stuffing, sugary treats like pies and cookies, cranberry sauce, and dinner rolls. These items are all carbohydrate rich, sugary foods. This can really do some damage to your oral health, but there are some simple ways you can help combat cavities while still enjoying Grandma’s pumpkin or pecan pie.

 

Thanksgiving Day Dental Health Tips

  1. Eat a Balanced Meal. Eat a meal with a mix of carbohydrates, proteins, and vegetables. This helps to counteract some of the acids produced when sugars and bacteria in the mouth come together. Also, some of the harder vegetables like raw carrots can act as a cleaning aid in your mouth as you chew. Hard vegetables can remove some of the excess food that sticks to your teeth.
  2. Limit your sweet, sticky foods. These can include pies, cookies, and stuffing. These foods tend to stick in the grooves of teeth and lodge between teeth, meaning they stay in the mouth longer and increase tooth decay risk.
  3. Do not Graze!! This might be one of the most important ones listed here. Not only will you allow these bad food items to stay in your mouth longer but you will not allow your saliva to neutralize. The acidic levels in the saliva will remain all day, allowing bacteria to destroy surface enamel without interference.
  4. It’s easy to spend all day just walking around a party eating snacks and drinking, but every time you put something into your mouth, it creates acids. Spend some time NOT eating on Thanksgiving day to cut down on the buildup of cavity causing foods.
  5. Come Prepared. If you are going away from home for your thanksgiving dinner bring a travel toothbrush with you even if you are just away for the day. If you are unable to brush your teeth immediately after eating for some reason? Rinse your mouth out with water to remove as much debris and neutralize the acid as much as possible. Also, bring some floss and floss following your meal as well.

 

Happy Thanksgiving to All!!

By following these simple holiday dental care tips, you can keep your teeth and gums healthy while still enjoying your Thanksgiving favorites. We wish you a happy and Safe thanks giving season this year and remember to visit us to cherish your smiles.

 

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Mouth Cancer Awareness Month

MCAM_date_OHF-EDIT-BOADRER-e1478295685278 Mouth Cancer Awareness MonthMouth Cancer Awareness Month – Be Prepared

Mouth cancer is a serious issue, a disease that has been diagnosed in 40000 people in the US in the year 2014. Cancer itself is defined as an uncontrollable growth of cells that are damaging and invasive towards the surrounding tissue.

When is the last time you schedule an appointment with our Margate & Pompano dentistry practice? When was the last time you had a screening for oral cancer? If you can’t remember the last time you had a checkup for one or both of these things, then it’s time to schedule a visit with Family Dental Associates. Even though it’s a little bit later in the month, April is Oral Cancer Awareness Month, and our team is dedicated to helping our patients understand the importance of screening and spreading the word about this deadly disease.

Know the Signs

You might think that signs of oral cancer are pretty clear, but they can sneak up on you if you’re not getting a screening at least once a year. It is projected that over 48,000 people will be diagnosed with oral cancer in 2016. The sad thing is that much of the time this cancer goes undiagnosed until the late stages, when it becomes much more difficult to fight. Some symptoms of a possible problem include:

  1. Difficulty moving the jaw for speaking or eating
  2. Change in the teeth or fit of dentures
  3. Sudden weight loss
  4. Pain behind or around the ears
  5. Large lumps on the neck or in the mouth
  6. Lesions or sores in the mouth
  7. Blotchy patches in the mouth

People who smoke, drink alcohol, have a family history of cancer, have had excessive sun exposure, and have been exposed to human papillomavirus are at a higher risk of developing oral cancer.

Awareness and Prevention Is Key

There are huge campaigns for other types of cancers, and because of these campaigns, more people are getting screened, and breast and prostate cancer cases are getting caught early. We want to make the same happen for oral cancer. No one should have to face a grim prognosis for a disease that has the potential to be caught in the early stages. So come in and get screened today, and don’t forget to encourage your family and friends to do the same. This battle is best fought together.

 

Lastly, you should note is that at any sign of trouble, you should contact your dentist immediately, and to prevent that, you should visit your dentist on a regular basis, following the tips above, to make the visit that much better, and to prevent any unpleasant situations that might otherwise arise.

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