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People with diabetes develop gum disease at a much higher rate than non-diabetic people. Unfortunately, they also have a harder time maintaining proper dental care. There are several things you can do if you have diabetes, including lowering your A1C. You can also reduce your risk of gum disease with these five tips.
Why is it important to reduce gum disease risk for people with diabetes?
People with diabetes have a harder time managing their oral health due to increased bacteria. Bacteria love sugar and people with diabetes have more sugar floating around their blood. This can create a very hospitable place for gingivitis and other oral infections. Reduce your risk of gum disease with these five daily habits.
Brush your teeth twice a day
Brush your teeth every morning and every night. If you eat a particularly sugary or starchy meal; you may want to brush your teeth after. Sugar and starch can lead to excessive growth of plaque, and the added sugar can break down your tooth enamel.
Floss your teeth before bed
Floss every night before bed. Ask your dentist which floss is best for sensitive gums. Flossing every night will help remove plaque and tartar from around and under the gum line. This step is an important part of dental and diabetes care. It might mean the difference between keeping and losing your teeth.
Lower your blood sugar
Manage your blood sugar more tightly. You may need to check your blood glucose levels more often, but it is important to do so. Bacteria love sugar and people with diabetes have a much higher risk of infection, especially in the mouth. You can also add more exercise into your weekly routing if you wanted to lower you blood sugar.
Quit smoking if you haven't already
If you smoke, it is time to quit. Smoking reduces circulation and people with diabetes cannot afford the added risk. Talk to your doctor or dentist for a list of resources to help you kick the habit. If you want more advice and tips about quitting smoking check out Smoke Free.
Visit your dentist regularly
See your dentist regularly. This might sound like a given, but people get busy and forget. People with diabetes have so many appointments they have to keep track of so, a teeth cleaning might slip through the cracks. Don't let that happen. Schedule your appointments as far out as your dentist will allow. The office will call you to remind you of your appointment.
Diabetes is hard enough to deal with without the risk of losing your teeth and gums.