Tag: diabetes

Stroke

Recent research has suggested that gum disease in patients carries a potentially higher risk of having a stroke than diabetes and has almost the same impact as high blood pressure in causing them.

Whilst obesity and smoking are commonly associated with raising the risk of suffering a stroke, many people don’t know the risks associated with poor oral health. According to the International Dental Health Foundation ‘only one in six people realise that people with gum disease may have an increased risk of stroke’.

Basically, bacterial infections can cause the body to be at higher risk of developing a blood clot which in turn is what causes the higher risk of developing a stroke.

What can you do?

If preventing gum disease may lower your risk of having a stroke, isn’t it worth flossing and brushing regularly? You should also visit your dentist every six months for a full dental health check and a thorough cleaning of your teeth.

If you are experiencing any difficulties please contact us in our Dublin dentist practice today at 01 668 3242.

Sources

*Impacts of Periodontitis on Nonfatal Ischemic Stroke
*British Dental Health Foundation
*Dental Wellness Institute. “Gum Disease and Health Risks”. 2010

Dry Mouth

It goes without saying that saliva plays a very important role in the mouth, keeping it moist and helping to keep your mouth and teeth clean. It also breaks down your food and fights decay.

Dry mouth (Xerostomia) is a condition which sees a decrease in the saliva production and can greatly impact the quality of life for a sufferer.  Do not underestimate the effects of dry mouth, as it can affect your digestion, taste and speech.

While smoking, stress or vitamin deficiency may be a temporary cause, long term suffering can be caused by the menopause, medication (including high blood pressure or depression pills), diabetes, glandular fever and radiotherapy.

There are a variety of rinses, gels and sprays which can help limit the symptoms and improve the quality of life.

What can you do?

If you have any concerns please speak to your dentist. Common symptoms of dry mouth include a burning sensation in the mouth, bad breath, unable to retain dentures or strange taste sensations.  Please contact us in our Dublin dentist practice today at 01 668 3242.

Diabetes and your Oral Health

The International Diabetes Federation have predicted that the number of people living with the condition in Ireland will rise to over 278,000 people by 2030. This will mark a staggering rise of almost 50% on current levels of just over 190,000 people.

So, many of you will be wondering why a dentist is quoting these staggering figures to you and why I am positioned to comment on them? What you perhaps don’t realise is that a majority of gum disease sufferers were found to be at high risk of developing diabetes in a recent report.

However, like the old adage ‘which came first the chicken or the egg’, it’s not entirely clear which way around the diabetes and gum disease link works. Researchers studied a representative sample of 9,000 people who didn’t have diabetes, although 817 of them went on to develop the disease. The researchers found that individuals with elevated levels of periodontal disease were nearly twice as likely to become diabetic within 20 years, even after adjusting for age, smoking, obesity and diet.

Diabetic patients with poor blood sugar level control are likely to have gum disease more frequently and also in a much more severe manner.

The importance of good oral hygiene cannot be overemphasised for patients with diabetes as gingivitis (the early stage of gum disease) can be treated and reversed. However if left untreated, periodontitis (the advanced stage) can occur which in turn may lead to bone loss.

Risks like impaired vision and limb loss are well known to diabetics, however gum disease is rapidly being referred to as the sixth major risk.

What can you do?

Diabetic patients need to pay much more attention to their oral health and ensure a visit to your dentist every six months for a full dental health check and a thorough cleaning of your teeth. You should also inform your dentist if you have recently been diagnosed with diabetes and ask for advice on keeping your mouth healthy.

If you are experiencing any difficulties please contact us in our Dublin dentist practice today at 01 668 3242.

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