Diabetics: Protect Your Smile!

Diabetes Cerritos CA

Diabetes is the most common autoimmune disorder in the United States, with 29 million people with either Type I or Type II. Nearly every aspect of your health is affected by diabetes, often in ways that you may not think. Your oral health is certainly one of those, and it is vital that you manage your diabetes for your smile.

If you are diabetic, you need to pay particular attention to your oral health. Today, your Cerritos, CA dentist speaks to you on some of the dangers associated with diabetic mouths, and how to best keep on top things!

Sugar Doesn’t Stay In The Blood

Hyperglycemia, also known as high blood sugar, poses problems to the body in a wide variety of ways. An aspect of oral health that is often overlooked by diabetic educators is how it increases glucose in the saliva.

When glucose levels in the blood rise, the body pushes out excess sugar through any mechanism it has available to it. The primary avenue for this is through our liquid secretions. Concentrated glucose is expelled through sweat, urine, and saliva.

This means that the body is cultivating an environment that’s pretty close to that of someone who’d been eating a lot of candy or drinking sugary drinks. But unlike with those situations, brushing your teeth will not make the situation improve, as your body will create more saliva.

Diabetics see the greatest rates of tooth decay of any demographic, so please visit your dentist routinely.

Fluid Imbalances

As mentioned earlier, the body is rapidly creating new bodily fluids, in order to load with glucose to send out from the blood. The primary avenue for this is through urination. With this excessive urine output comes inevitable rapid dehydration. This means that you’re more likely to experience dry mouth.

Our aliva is a highly antibacterial fluid, which is full of enzymes to protect our mouths. If their glucose levels are not maintained properly, diabetics see a greatly increased level of infection.

Periodontal disease, also known as gum disease, is also much more likely to develop in diabetic patients. This can lead to gum recession, which leaves the roots of the teeth uncovered. Without the gum’s protection, infection can develop within the structure of the tooth itself. It’s important to know that 1 in 5, or 20% of tooth loss is directly connected to diabetes.

Fungal infections, such as thrush, are also found much more often within the mouths of those with diabetes. Since these patients heal at a slower rate, these infections can cause sores wich become dangerous to the smile.

How Do I Protect My Smile?

As with a perfectly healthy patient, a solid oral hygiene regimen is crucial to maintaining a fantastic smile. Twice daily tooth brushing should only be your start, and daily flossing and an oral rinse are very important.

For patients with diabetes, closely monitored blood sugars will make a large difference in the outcomes in oral health. You minimize the damage to the body by keeping your levels similar to those of non-diabetics.


Dr. Shawn Hofkes and the staff at Cerritos Dental Surgery are highly qualified to address complex issues, including those that require oral surgery to correct. To schedule an appointment or consultation with Dr. Hofkes, contact us today by calling 562-584-4082. We proudly welcome patients of all ages from Cerritos, CA, and all surrounding communities, such as Lakewood, Long Beach, Buena Park, and more.