Tooth decay is one of the most common oral health problems in the US today for both children and adults. A variety of causes can be responsible for the onset of tooth decay, but with proper awareness, maintaining regular oral hygiene, and periodic visits to the dental office can help to minimize the problems of tooth decay.
Diet plays an important role in fortifying an individual’s oral health and fighting tooth decay. Sugary foods in particularly can lead to rapid deterioration of the teeth and gums. Studio Dentistry, led by experienced general and cosmetic dentist Dr. Rob Strain, provides cutting edge dental treatments to patients in Rancho Mirage, Palm Springs, Palm Desert, and surrounding communities.
Diabetes and Tooth Decay
More than 16 million people in the US are afflicated with diabetes today. Most diabetics are aware that this autoimmune disease can cause problems with various body parts over a period of time, which include the eyes, kidneys, heart, and nerves. However, what most people do not know is that diabetes makes a patient more susceptible to developing oral infections, gum disease and periodontal disease as compared to those who do not have diabetes.
Role of Diet
In the relationship between diabetes and tooth decay, diet too has a role to play. Over time, the teeth are prone to be covered with plaque, which is a sticky film of unhealthy bacteria. When an individual eats a sweet or starchy meal or snack or drinks a beverage containing sugars or starches, these bacteria will release acids that attack the tooth enamel.
Persistent attacks over a period of time will cause the hard enamel to break down, and may eventually lead to cavities. If left untreated, these cavities will quickly result in progressive tooth decay, and eventual loss of tooth. In this relationship between sugars and tooth decay, diabetes plays a part.
When diabetes is not controlled well, high glucose levels in the saliva are likely to help plaque and unhealthy bacteria to thrive. If the plaque is not periodically removed, it will gradually harden into tartar. When tartar gets deposited on the teeth, it will make it difficult to clean the teeth thoroughly. Gradually, it will lead to conditions of chronic inflammation and infection in the mouth.
Diabetes will not only promote the chances plaque formation, but will also reduce the patient’s resistance to infection and delay the healing process. Therefore, diabetics will be at a higher risk of rapid and severe tooth decay, and need special dental care periodically to extend the health and life of their teeth.
Preventive Tips for Diabetics
The following tips can help to minimize the risk of tooth decay for diabetics:
- Minimize the use of sugars and starches in the diet, eat healthy, and exercise regularly.
- Brush twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste and floss once a day.
- Keep a track of blood sugar levels, and also monitor the cholesterol and triglyceride levels periodically.
- Treat dental infections promptly, and stay on top of insulin control and dental care for better chances to minimize the risk of tooth decay.
Studio Dentistry receives patients from Rancho Mirage, Palm Springs, Palm Desert, and nearby areas.
If you would like to learn more about the dental procedures and treatments performed by cosmetic dentists Dr. Rob Strain, DDS and Dr. Laura Wittenauer, DDS please call us at 760.568.9494 or click here. Serving new patients in Rancho Mirage, Palm Springs, Palm Desert and surrounding areas.