Diabetes can affect your whole body, including your mouth. So you’ll want to take special care of your teeth and gums. It’s also important to manage your blood sugar. Over time, increased levels of blood glucose can put you at risk for oral health problems.
The rates of diabetes have dramatically increased in all states.
Twenty-six million children and adults in the United States -- 8% of the population -- have diabetes.
The risk for type 2 diabetes typically increases with age. In the absence of risks, testing should begin after age 45. One of the biggest jumps in type 2 diabetes was among men.
The risk factors for type 2 diabetes include:
being overweight or obese
a sedentary lifestyle
Dry mouth, which can lead to soreness, ulcers, infections, and tooth decay.
Inflammation in your gums.
Thrush. People with diabetes who often take antibiotics to fight infections are more likely to get this fungal infection of the mouth and tongue. The fungus thrives on the high levels of sugar in the saliva of people with uncontrolled diabetes. It can give your mouth and tongue a burning feeling.
You can do a lot to avoid these problems, starting with the basics of taking good care of your mouth, teeth, and gums.
National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse: "Prevent diabetes problems: Keep your teeth and gums healthy."
American College of Periodontology: "Mouth Body Connection."
American Dental Association.