Saturday, November 7, 2009

Are Your Teeth Getting Bigger?

Signs and symptoms of periodontal (gum) disease include bleeding gums; red, swollen, or tender gums; gums that have pulled away from your teeth (this makes your teeth look bigger); pus between the gums when they are compressed; persistent bad breath or bad taste in the mouth; permanent teeth that are loose or moving apart; any change in the way the teeth fit together when the patient bites; and any change in the fit of dentures. Most people with diabetes do not experience pain with periodontal disease, however, and some can have periodontal disease and be asymptomatic (no symptoms).
People with diabetes are three times more likely than persons without diabetes to have destructive periodontal disease (gum disease), such as periodontitis. Periodontal disease progresses more rapidly and often is more severe in individuals with both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes.
Gum disease is a bacterially induced chronic inflammatory disease that destroys non-calcified connective tissue and bone supporting the teeth and can lead to tooth loss. Recent research suggests a two-way connection between diabetes and periodontal disease. Not only are people with diabetes more susceptible to periodontal disease, but the presence of periodontal disease can worsen blood sugar control. In fact, proper care of the mouth can help people with diabetes achieve better blood sugar control.

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