Looks can be deceiving.
For all of the natural splendor which surrounds us, there is a dark side to living in Hawaii.
As home to wonders that can’t be found anywhere else in America, we’re also home to some of the worst rates of diabetes and pre-diabetes in the entire country.
The Hawaii office of the American Diabetes Association (or ADA) counts nearly 600,000 people in Hawaii living with the debilitating blood-sugar disease or are in the initial stages of developing it – which works out to just over 42% of the state’s entire population.
We think that’s too many people. We want to fight it, but we can’t do it without your help.
Why should a dentist care about diabetes?
Well, there are more reasons than you think.
Aside from what you might already know about diabetes – that it messes up the body’s ability to regulate its blood sugar, causing a number of circulation problems that, in its most extreme form, leads to the amputation of suffering limbs – this disease has a nasty relationship with oral health that’s too strong and too destructive for you to ignore.
The science behind it tells us that because diabetes messes with your body’s blood sugar levels, it can hurt your gum’s ability to provide proper blood flow to your teeth.
Poor blood circulation overall results in poor blood circulation in your gums, and will put you at a greater risk for gum disease, which can destroy the tissues and bone which hold your teeth in place, causing you to lose them.
This can put you at further risk for greater disease in the future.
But did you know that poor oral hygiene can actually lead to diabetes itself, and not just the other way around?
According to the ADA, new research shows that if you suffer from gum disease, your risk of developing diabetes is higher than normal. Advanced stages of gum disease are also now understood to contribute to improper blood sugar levels, which means they can accelerate the diabetic process.
Sadly, diabetes can cause more trouble in your mouth than just gum disease, including:
- Dry mouth, which can increase rates of bacteria production
- Poor gum healing
- Fungal infections
- Taste impairment
- Tooth decay
With so many Hawaiians at risk or already suffering from diabetes, and the impact of dental health upon it, we can’t stress enough that a healthy mouth can make for a healthy body. Besides Hawaiians, Filipino Americans, Japanese Americans and all Asian Americans are at a greater risk of developing diabetes than the general population.
If you neglect one, chances are that you neglect the other. And you can’t afford to lose either.
What You Can Do About It
If this sounds like you or a member of your family, every second you wait will make the problem harder to correct. Ultimately, it could result in death.
That is simply unacceptable to us.
We recommend that you consult your doctor as well as give us a call and schedule an appointment so we can establish any links between your oral health and your body’s regulation of sugars.
After you come to our modern facility in the heart of bustling downtown Honolulu, we’ll identify and begin a treatment program to aggressively combat your gum disease.
On your own time, we recommend increasing the number of times you brush and floss daily. The more you can do to maintain your smile, the more you do to fight against gum disease and its ability to harm your blood sugar.
And the more you can do to maintain a healthy body, the more you can do to prevent diabetes from declaring war on your mouth.
While there are prescription drugs than can treat symptoms of diabetes, there is generally no greater substitute for a proper diet and regular exercise.
When combined, they will keep your blood sugar in check, halting the progression of diabetes, which in turn halts the progression of related oral diseases.
In the same way, regular checkups and maintenance of your teeth and gums can help halt the progression of diabetes, especially when combined with physician-recommended solutions.
Serious Solutions for a Serious Problem
If you have already been diagnosed with diabetes, you know the scary truth: Your life is already on the line.
Getting treatment for diabetes without tackling your oral health problems is counter-intuitive, however; you’re only attacking one head of a two-headed problem.
If you’ve got a missing tooth, it can fan the flames for other oral problems, including gum disease, which will accelerate your diabetes.
When brushing and flossing is no longer enough, let our services step in and finish the fight for you.
A quality dental implant, and crooked teeth made straight and beautiful by a set of customized Invisalign braces, will not only perform miracles for your appearance, but they’ll help turn the tide against gum disease by making your mouth easier to clean and guarded against further infection.
So for the sake of your health or the health of a loved one, don’t hesitate any longer by letting those dental problems spiral out of control.
We’re committed to fighting diabetes and gum disease with all of the expertise at our disposal. Just don’t wait any longer, because longer could be too late.