How High Blood Sugar Levels Affect Your Oral Health

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately 1 in 10 Americans live with diabetes. While unstable blood sugar levels can bring a lot of woes for the rest of your body, this disease can also have an effect on your oral health. In fact, many people who have to get tooth extractions in Cincinnati or who are diagnosed with gum disease are living with diabetes. Take a look at some of the most common ways high blood sugar levels can affect how your mouth functions.

Dry Mouth

One of the first symptoms people with diabetes often notice is how dry their mouths feel. The change is caused by a change in the consistency of the saliva. When your blood sugar levels rise, so does the level of glucose in your saliva, which can quickly lead to feelings of excessive thirst.

More Bacteria

As the glucose in your system gets out of hand, bacteria in your mouth kick into overdrive. Many types of bad bacteria thrive on higher sugar levels. In other words, the higher amounts of glucose encourage the bacteria to both thrive and multiply. This is one reason why people with diabetes are so prone to tooth loss. Heightened levels of bacteria in the moth make the person more prone to tooth decay.

Lack of Blood Flow

When the sugar levels in your blood rise, this changes how blood vessels perform and how they carry oxygen throughout the body. You can even see changes in oxygen-rich blood flow to the mouth, which can bring about a host of big problems over the long term, such as:

  • More issues with bad breath (halitosis)
  • Lack of oxygen in the soft tissues to support the teeth
  • Less saliva than usual

In addition, with circulatory issues, your mouth does not heal as quickly as it should when something is wrong. For example, if you develop an abscessed tooth, that area may be slower to heal than normal.

Take Care of Your Smile in Spite of Diabetes with a Cincinnati Dentist

Having diabetes can mean heightened risks of oral health problems and even losing your teeth. However, keeping your blood sugar levels in check and working with a Cincinnati dentist can make a big difference. Contact us at Kemper Meadow Family Dentistry to schedule an appointment today.