With April 2017 officially marking another round of Defeat Diabetes Month, it’s time to start thinking about the relationship between diabetes and oral health. Many people are aware that diabetes ranks as a leading cause of death in America, but untreated diabetes can also lead to other health conditions that, while not necessarily leading to higher mortality numbers, remain a serious concern to those affected. Among these are gum disease, tooth decay, and other dental problems amplified by the diabetic’s increased susceptibility to infection. Fortunately many dentists have a secret weapon in their arsenal that’s well suited to this problem: the dental laser.
Lasers are revolutionizing dentistry and there are promising results for diabetic patients. Lasers have a bactericidal effect on infected tissue that help reduce inflammation in the periodontal pockets. Laser therapy helps heal periodontal pockets by eliminating harmful bacteria. After the infected tissue is eliminated, healthy tissue can regenerate during the healing process. Lasers offer significant advantages including:
- No anesthetic or less anesthetic
- Helps preserve tissue and bone
- Minimizes bleeding
- Minimizes pain
- Minimizes swelling
- Minimally invasive
- Promotes more rapid healing
- Improved healing
- Reduces post-operative discomfort
Good oral hygiene after periodontal treatment can reduce the occurrence of complications. Everyone, and diabetics especially, should brush and floss daily, stop smoking, and follow instructions provided by your physician and dental professional.