Diabetes – a lifelong condition causing blood sugar to become too high – can potentially affect your dental health as, the higher the blood sugar and saliva glucose levels in your body, the higher the risk of:
- gum disease
- tooth decay
- tooth loss
- jaw and gum pain
- dry mouth – reduced saliva flow
Initial symptoms of poor oral health are usually quite mild. If you have any doubts, or think that your dental health is suffering because of your diabetes, you should seek advice from your dentist.
Although dentists cannot diagnose diabetes – this is the responsibility of your professional healthcare provider – they can often identify signs and symptoms in people who are undiagnosed with type 2 diabetes by looking in the mouth.
If suffering from tooth loss and poor dental health as a result of your diabetes, you may want to consider dental implants. Dental implants, which feel and act like real teeth, can significantly improve the self-confidence of a diabetes sufferer diabetes, and can improve oral health.
When deciding whether dental implants are for you, it’s important to know how diabetes can affect your gums and teeth.
Dental complications caused by sugar
The increased supply of sugars and starches in the body can cause plaque to build-up on your teeth and, over time, harden into tartar. This presents difficulty in brushing and cleaning your teeth which, in turn, causes gum disease – gingivitis.
If left untreated, gum disease can advance to infection and potential tooth loss. When you see the first signs of gum disease in your mouth – your gums will feel sore and swollen and may even bleed – it’s important that you step-up your dental health with regular flossing and brushing.
Diabetes can also cause blood vessel changes, which can reduce the flow of nutrients and elimination of waste from body tissues. This reduction in blood flow will subsequently weaken gums and bone.
Certain medications used to control diabetes can contribute to tooth decay, leading to poor dental health, gum disease and potential tooth loss.
This is because the medications can cause changes to the oral cavity, including:
- Candidiasis – fungal infection
- Xerostomia – dry mouth
- Burning mouth
- Gum disease
- Periodontal disease
- Caries – tooth or bone decay
Dental implants for diabetics
Dental implants are available for people who have suffered with their dental health due to diabetes. When diabetes is well controlled, dental implants will give you your smile, and self-confidence, back. Here at EvoDental, we can assess whether you are suitable for dental implants when you come and see one of our dentists.
If you are suitable and you want to go ahead, it’s possible you may need extra pre- and post-implant care, in order to maximise the success of the implants.
It usually takes around a week for dental implants to heal and for you to start eating again, but this may take longer if you have diabetes.
Benefits of dental implants
There are many benefits to having dental implants:
- Improves oral health
If you suffer from diabetes and experience gum infections and tooth loss, then you will also lose bone mass around the site of your missing teeth. Dental implants stimulate new bone growth – osseointegration – which can help to prevent future bone loss.
You should treat your dental implants as though they were real teeth, by continuing to floss and brush on a regular basis.
- Supports your facial structure
If you have experienced tooth loss as a result of your diabetes, then the loss of bone that comes with it can give you a sunken appearance around your mouth. Dental implants can also preserve your facial structure indefinitely.
- Improves appearance of teeth
Dental implants look completely natural and no-one – unless you tell them – will be able to tell you have implants!
- Improves self-confidence
Following on from the above point, as dental implants improve the appearance of your mouth, they also improve your self-confidence by giving you your smile back!
They also allow you to talk normally and there are no restrictions when it comes to what food you can eat.
- Durable and long-lasting
As dental implants are fixed to your jawbone, they are strong and stable and will not fall out or become loose.
With the right aftercare, including flossing and brushing, dental implants can potentially last around 25 years!
Comparing the cost of your dental implants versus the cost of the constant work that will be required to your natural teeth, such as fillings and bridges, they are very cost-effective. Here at EvoDental, we use clear, transparent pricing, with no hidden extras – and add to that, we are the most competitive in the industry!
Once the dental implants are in and they have healed, our dentists then help you to preserve the implants and prevent any further damage to your gums from your diabetes.
To see if you are suitable for dental implants and for our specialised and innovative EvoSolution – our advanced alternative to all-on-four dental implants – contact us on 0800 470 2998 or visit our website at www.evodental.com to request a free consultation for your smile-in-a-day opportunity!