This past Thursday evening, I had the pleasure of speaking to the Diabetes Support Group at the Somerset Medical Center. The title of the talk was “Diabetes in Dentistry –What You Need To Know.” Two themes were emphasized during the hour-long lecture.
First, all systems and organs in the body are connected. And, in this case, diabetics are at risk for more severe periodontal infections than the general population. In addition, uncontrolled periodontal disease actually aggravates the diabetes as well as the reverse.
Second, it’s all about prevention. Those with diabetes often have xerostomia or “dry mouth.“ So, not only do diabetics have a compromised ability to fight infections, butdry mouth also contributes to an increased risk of decay and gum disease. As a result, cavities and gum disease can progress rather quickly in these patients. And, by the time a person realizes that a problem exists, the issue is often quite advanced and requires more aggressive, costly and involved treatment to be addressed. Prevention through regularly scheduled care as well as proper home care is the best way to avoid such major problems.
The entire lecture as well as the questions and answers segment that followed was videotaped. It will be on the hospital television channel as well as online at www.somervilletv.com under “Live TV.”
If you have any questions about diabetes and dentistry, it will be my pleasure to answer them. I can be reached in the office @ 908.359.6655 or online at www.DesignsForDentalHealth.com