How Diabetes Affects Your Child’s Teeth
Individuals with diabetes are actually at a higher risk of experiencing gum disease. This is because of poor blood sugar management. Gum disease actually can cause a slight increase in blood sugar levels, which can make diabetes even harder to manage. This means that it’s even more important for children living with diabetes to pay attention to their oral health, to make sure that they maintain their diabetes as well as prevent gum disease.
Oral symptoms of untreated diabetes
Untreated diabetes can lead to plenty of painful oral health problems. Here are a few of the most common oral symptoms of untreated diabetes:
-A dry mouth caused by a decrease in saliva, which leads to a higher chance of developing cavities
-Inflamed and bleeding gums
-Mouth wounds taking a significantly longer time to heal
-Receding gum line
-Teeth erupting at an early age
-Oral infections happening at an abnormally frequent rate
If your child is consistently exhibiting more than one of these symptoms, you may want to have their blood sugar levels checked, as well as bringing them into their pediatric dentist for an oral exam.
Avoiding oral problems among children with diabetes
The best way to avoid having painful oral issues, is to make sure that your child with diabetes is practicing regular good oral health habits. This includes making sure that your child brushes their teeth twice a day for an appropriate amount of time(about 2 minutes), and also that they’re flossing every single day. On top of that, your child should be drinking plenty of water every day. This helps with the production of saliva, which is one of the uncomfortable side effects of diabetes. Limiting sweet and sugary drinks is also a good idea, like soft drinks and undiluted juice.
Treating gum disease helps blood sugar levels
Gum disease is an obnoxious side effect of having diabetes, and treating it may seem just like treating a symptom instead of taking care of the cause of the symptom. Treating your child’s diabetes is a priority, but you should also treat the gum disease. Doing so actually helps level your child’s blood sugar levels, which makes managing their diabetes easier.
If you think your child may have diabetes, make sure that you schedule the appropriate appointments with their pediatric dentist as well as their pediatrician, to properly diagnose their symptoms and care for the problem.