It’s hard for us to fathom how much diabetes can affect our overall oral health and candidacy for dental implants. In fact, many of us don’t see a link between the two, or how diabetes and oral health are related. Yet, here is a real fact… Diabetes is a condition where your body cannot properly produce or respond to the insulin hormone that helps digest sugar. Due to this impairment, diabetics can have an abnormal metabolism of carbohydrates in their body. Furthermore, their blood and urine streams typically show increased levels of glucose (sugar) present.

How Does Diabetes Affect Oral Health?

Unfortunately, diabetes doesn’t affect just one area of the body, it can affect the whole body. This is because when you have too much glucose in the bloodstream, it causes major circulation issues. Over time, the body begins to break down as sugar appears in most body fluids; and eventually, other complications can occur.

Consequently, this also includes your jaw, gums, and teeth where plaque and bacteria can grow exponentially with diabetes. Various gum diseases, for example, can develop in conjunction with diabetes, making oral issues harder to control.  So, can a person with diabetes have dental implants? Would they be good candidates?

The Issue with Diabetes and Dental Implants

For patients who do not have diabetes under control, having implants could pose a problem. Since implants are installed directly into your jaw bone, patients with problematic disease typically experience difficulty healing. This is why diabetes mellitus is considered a risk factor for implantology. Many patients experience delayed wound healing and the implant-to-bone osseointegration process cannot properly occur. In other words, dental implants typically aren’t an effective solution for missing teeth in patients with poorly controlled diabetes. However, for those patients who do have the disease well under control, there is hope.

Consult with Experienced Oral Surgeons

Fortunately, some studies have shown that certain diabetic patients who effectively maintain the disease can have implants. However, for those patients, it’s always best to consult with an oral specialist, like the surgeons of OMSH in Houston. Diabetes is a serious condition and it’s always best for patients to learn as much as possible about the disease. With two main types of diabetic conditions, patients need to know how to keep it under control.

If you’re a patient with diabetes and you want dental implants, it won’t hurt to speak with an experienced oral surgeon. The highly-trained and dual-licensed oral maxillofacial surgeons of OMSH will always offer professional recommendations. During your consultation with them, they will help you determine if you’re a good candidate for implants. If not, they can provide various other options that may be right for you. Our goal is always to help restore your confident smile, and we have many ways to help accomplish that. If you’re in the Greater Houston area, connect with us today at 832-509-4505.

November is Diabetes Awareness Month! For you and your loved ones, learn all you can from the American Diabetes Association.