How Diabetes Can Affect Your Mouth

Too much sugar in your bloodstream from diabetes can cause pain, infection, and many other oral problems involving all areas of your mouth including your teeth, gums, jaw, tongue, floor and roof of your mouth, and inside of your cheeks.

Glucose (sugar) is present in your saliva. If diabetes is not under control, the high sugar levels in our saliva help harmful bacteria grow. This can lead to gingivitis, tooth decay and other dental problems. Since uncontrolled diabetes can weaken your immune system, you may develop infection more easily. If left untreated, gingivitis can lead to periodontitis. Periodontitis is a gum disease that causes the gums to pull away from the teeth leaving pockets that can become infected. This can lead to resorption of the bone that surrounds your teeth. The gums, bones, and tissue that support the teeth are eventually destroyed if left untreated. Teeth may become loose and might need to be removed.

As a diabetic, it is important to be aware of the early warning signs of infection. Swollen, tender, or bleeding gums are the first clues of gingivitis. Some of the signs may not be noticeable initially. Your best defense is to stay on top of your dental exams so your dentist can check for signs of any developing problems.

Tips Prior to Dental Appointment

If you take insulin or other diabetic medication, take them as prescribed prior to your dental visit. It is also helpful to bring your diabetic medications with you to each dental appointment.

You may need to postpone any nonemergency dental work if your blood sugar is not under control. Give us a call and we will reschedule your visit until it is under control. The South Tampa Smiles team can adapt dental treatment to your meet needs. Give us a call at (813) 289 – 0560 if you have questions or concerns and to schedule your next dental exam and cleaning. We look forward to helping you keep your smile healthy and bright!


Oral Health Concerns with Epilepsy

November is National Epilepsy Awareness Month. Epilepsy is the 4TH most common neurological disorder. It is associated with abnormal electrical brain activity and marked by unpredictable seizures and can cause other health problems. There are also a number of oral health concerns with epilepsy. Teeth can become cracked or broken during a seizure or fall. Clenching during a seizure episode can also cause complications and discomfort with your jaw. Knowing the oral health concerns with epilepsy will help minimize risks during dental treatment.

It is important for dental professionals to be informed of patients with epilepsy, the frequency of seizures, severity and any known triggers. Inform your dentist of any changes in seizure medications or medical history during each dental visit. Your dentist should have your healthcare team’s phone number on file in the event of a seizure during your dental appointment. Be certain to inform your dentist immediately if you begin experiencing an aura.

There are also some common side effects from taking seizure medications. There is an increased risk of infection and delayed healing time. Bleeding gums, dry mouth, and overgrown gum tissue are a few of the most common problems that can cause pain and discomfort

General dental practices can treat people with epilepsy safely if they are informed of your illness. Your team of dental professionals should be informed, aware and accommodating. The stability your seizure activity should be considered when planning your dental visits. Be sure to take your medications a few hours prior to your appointment time. Schedule your next dental visit with South Tampa Smiles with confidence knowing our team of professionals provides top quality care to each of our patients. Give us a call at (813) 289 – 0560.

More information on oral health concerns with epilepsy: Epilepsy Health Center


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