How often should I see my dentist with diabetes?

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Carol Jahn
Dentist
How often you need to see your dentist when you have diabetes may be dependent on how well controlled your diabetes is as well as your gum health.  If your diabetes is well-controlled and your gums healthy, twice a year may be fine.  If you have poorly controlled diabetes and/or periodontal problems, then you will likely need to see your dentist 3-4 times per year.  Uncontrolled diabetes increases your risk for periodontal disease.
It is important to see your dentist regularly if you have diabetes, as you are at greater risk for oral health problems. Your dentist can best advise how frequently you should be visit, as this can vary by the individual. Be sure to tell your dentist that you are diabetic and also of any changes in your health. 

Seeing your dentist regularly for cleanings and screenings is part of a good oral health routine. Brushing twice daily for two minutes with a fluoride toothpaste and flossing once daily as well as maintaining a balanced diet are also important factors for good oral health.
Good oral hygiene is important for everyone and especially for people with diabetes. Be sure to see your dentist at least once every six months or more often if you have gingivitis or gum disease. Each diabetic is different, so talk with your dentist about your personal oral health. Along with seeing your dentist regularly, it's important to have proper home care for good oral health. Daily dental care involves brushing your teeth twice a day and flossing each day. Cleaning your teeth at home removes and disrupts the plaque and bacteria that constantly form on the teeth regardless of your eating habits or diet. In addition, do oral health checks at least once a month and look for signs that may indicate a dental or gum problem. You may notice inflammation of the gums or sensitive gums. You may have bad breath or pus between the gum and a tooth. These are warning signs of possible gum disease and you need to be seen by your dentist. With regular care and trips to the dentist, you can prevent or manage most dental problems that occur with diabetes.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.