Gum Disease Increases Blood Sugar Levels In Diabetics

Gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, is one of the leading causes of tooth loss among adults and is also frequently linked to diabetes. It is well accepted today  that Diabetics  are more likely to have periodontal disease than non diabetics. In fact, periodontal disease is often considered the sixth complication of diabetes.

Recent scientific studies are indicating that not only diabetics are more prone to develop periodontal disease  but makes it more difficult for this group of people  to control their blood sugar.

Periodontal disease triggers the body’s inflammatory response which affects insulin sensitivity and ultimately lead to unhealthy blood sugar levels. Severe periodontal disease  increases inflammatory factors in the body and in the blood stream, which increases blood sugar. This contributes to increased periods of time when the body functions with a high blood sugar. This puts diabetics at increased risk for diabetic complications ( neuropathy, kidney problems, retinopathy, gangrene, high blood pressure, hyperlipidimia etc).

It is strongly recommended that , diabetics who have periodontal disease should be treated to eliminate the periodontal infection. Establishing routine periodontal care is one way to help keep diabetes under control.”

Factors That Link Diabetes to Gum Disease

Studies show that people with insufficient blood sugar control seem to develop gum diseasemore frequently and more severely than people who have good management over their diabetes

Diabetes slows circulation, which can also make the gum tissues more susceptible to infections.

Diabetes reduces the body’s resistance to infection, which increases the probability of the gums becoming infected.

High glucose levels in saliva promote growth of bacteria that cause gum disease.

People with diabetes who smoke are far more likely to develop gum disease than people who smoke and do not have diabetes.

Poor oral hygiene is a major factor in gum disease for everyone, but it is even more so for a person with diabetes

Signs and Symptoms of Gum Disease

Red and swollen gums

Gums that tend to bleed easily

Gums separating from the teeth

Loose teeth

Frequent bad breath

Change in the way your teeth fit together

Change in the way partials or dentures fit


Maintain good control over your blood sugar levels.

Do not smoke.

Good oral hygiene and regular dental checkups are essential in preventing gum disease.

Eat a well-balanced  healthy diet.

There are two major stages of periodontal disease, gingivitis (inflammation of the gum tissue) and periodontitis (loss of supporting bone). People with diabetes tend to develop gum diseasemore frequently than others. However, if it is diagnosed in the early stages of gingivitis, it can be treated and reversed. If treatment is not received at the early stages, periodontal disease results and the irreversible process of bone loss results. In either situation, it is important seek treatment as soon as possible to prevent further bone loss. This should be followed by periodontal maintenance and good home care.