If you’re one of the 29 million Americans living with diabetes, then you know … diabetes can take a huge toll on your dental health.
People with diabetes face a unique set of dental challenges: diabetic breath that smells like alcohol, fruity-smelling breath, burning dry mouth, gum inflammation and a whole lot more.
If you’re tired of diabetes stealing your smile and fresh breath, follow these 5 dental care tips and take back control.
1. Break Free of “Diabetic Breath”
Diabetics often have a distinct smell to their breath.
In fact, researchers have discovered that this diabetic breath test is a great way to spot the earliest stages of diabetes.
Why does diabetes give you bad breath?
First, high blood sugar levels cause rapid bacteria growth. Bacterium is what makes bad breath molecules multiply out of control.
Second, high ketone levels can give diabetics bad breath. Without the proper amount of insulin, the body’s cells can’t get the glucose they need for fuel. So the body burns fat instead, causing ketones to accumulate in the blood and urine.
Ever wonder why diabetic breath smells like alcohol? That’s because one such ketone is acetone … the same chemical found in nail polish remover.
When ketones reach a dangerous level, diabetics are at risk for ketoacidosis. At this stage, diabetics may notice a fruity breath smell.
How to fight diabetic breath:
- Control your blood sugar
- Don’t smoke
- Drink plenty of water each day
- If you wear dentures, remove them at night
- Use a Tongue Scraper daily – the tongue is a hot spot for bacteria to hang out, and scraping your tongue is 75% more effective at removing odors versus a toothbrush
- Swish with Oxyfresh Lemon-Mint Mouthwash. This is the preferred mouthwash for diabetics because it’s sugar-free, dye-free, and alcohol-free for no sting, burn or dry mouth. And it’s guaranteed to wipe out bad breath for 6 hours at a time.
2. Treat Your Periodontal Disease
Periodontal disease affects 1 in 3 diabetics. This inflammatory disease of the gums occurs when bacteria attack the gum tissue and bones that support the teeth.
Like a typical vicious cycle, diabetes makes periodontal disease worse, and periodontal disease makes diabetes worse by impacting blood sugar and metabolism.
The good news?
Studies show that treating periodontal disease improves glycemic control.
What you can do: Besides keeping your blood sugar under control, brush AND floss twice a day, use a sugar-free and alcohol-free mouthwash to fight bacteria growth, and visit the dentist regularly.
Did you know? Oxyfresh Lemon-Mint Power Rinse mouthwash beat store brands in a double-blind clinical study for improving the gum health of 50 patients with periodontal disease. Plus, it’s free of alcohol and sugar.
3. Pamper Your Gums After Dental Procedures
If you have diabetes and are undergoing a dental procedure or surgery, be aware that you’re at greater risk for infection. You should also expect a longer healing time.
High blood sugar makes it difficult to fight infection and slows the healing process. Diabetics also experience decreased blood flow and thickened blood vessels, which slows the flow of healing nutrients to the gum tissue.
For a speedier healing time and soothing relief of gum discomfort, use dentist-recommended Oxyfresh Super Relief Dental Gel. It’s sugar-free and formulated with healing Aloe vera, zinc and Oxygene® to keep your gums clean and deodorized.
4. Partner With Your Dentist
Make sure your dentist is aware that you have diabetes. Most dentists recommend more frequent dental cleanings and exams if you have diabetes, usually 3 times a year.
5. Sip Away Your Dry Mouth
Water is important for everyone to be drinking each day, but it’s especially important for diabetics, as they’re often prone to dry mouth.
Dry mouth isn’t just annoying and uncomfortable; it can also make diabetic breath even worse.
Sip plenty of water each day to avoid dry mouth, especially during meals. If you need more relief from dry mouth, suck on sugar-free candies.
Want to know more easy ways to fight dry mouth? Check out this blog: A Complete Guide to Getting Rid of Dry Mouth.
Don’t let diabetes give you bad breath and an unhealthy mouth. Control your blood sugar and follow these 5 dental care tips for diabetics. You’ll be smiling and rocking fresh breath in no time!
Read this next: 7 Smart Ways to Prevent Bad Breath