Diabetes and Dental Health: Tips for Caring for Teeth and Gums

Diabetes and Dental HealthDo you struggle with diabetes and worry about how it affects your health? If so, you aren’t alone. We offer dental health help in Ventura for our patients living with blood sugar irregularities.

Like many other diabetic dental patients, you may also wonder about the connection between diabetes and dental health. The following information will help you keep your diabetes under control and your smile beautiful.

How Diabetes May Affect Your Mouth

Diabetes brings along a host of symptoms like eye, kidney, and circulation problems.

But did you know that your mouth is also at risk?

Common oral manifestations include:

  • Dry mouth
  • Burning sensation in the mouth
  • Sores in or around the mouth that don’t heal well
  • Susceptibility to thrush infections
  • Increased risk for gum inflammation and disease (including tooth loss)

To counter dry mouth, many diabetics have a habit of sipping on sweet drinks or sucking on candy. If the same is true for you, then that frequent sugar and acid exposure could increase your decay risk.

Additionally, if your diabetes is not well controlled, you will be at a higher risk for delayed healing and developing infections after dental procedures. This could rule out the possibility of restoring your smile with a dental implant, for example.

Keeping Your Smile Healthy if You Have Diabetes

Periodontal disease is the most common oral health problem among diabetics. There is a unique connection between gum disease and unbalanced blood glucose levels. Once the gums get infected, your body may not be able to fight off the infection. In turn, the inflammation can make it more difficult to control sugar levels.

The important thing here is prevention. Keeping your gums clean and your teeth strong are the keys to avoid oral disease.

A good oral hygiene routine for oral health and diabetes includes:

  • Brushing at least twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste
  • Flossing daily
  • Using an antibacterial rinse as a dental professional recommends
  • Not smoking
  • Cleaning dentures or other oral appliances daily
  • Visiting a dentist for checkups and professional dental cleanings
  • Carefully monitoring blood sugar levels and managing them as a doctor directs

A healthy dental routine may include special devices or techniques for cleaning teeth. For example, many diabetic patients love cleaning their gums with a water flosser or powered toothbrush.

When You Visit the Dentist

Maintaining healthy teeth and gums goes hand-in-hand with keeping your diabetes under control. That’s why dental visits are so important to managing this lifelong condition.

Schedule your visit in the morning at a time when you’re not as likely to experience low blood sugar. Eat your normal meal before your appointment, don’t skip it. Make sure you take your scheduled medications before any dental procedure.

Before you do any dental treatment, be prepared to discuss a few questions about your diabetes.

Diabetes can make managing oral health something of a challenge. But it’s not impossible! A little diligence and the help of a great dental team will help you be successful.

Looking for more dental health help in Ventura

Contact Dr. David Satnick, DMD today to plan a visit.


Are you in need of a dentist that can support you with oral health? Book an appointment with Ventura dentist Dr. David Satnick, DDS, or for more information call 805.639.3050 now!

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