American Diabetes Alert Day: Pre-diabetes
Following the lead of heart disease, diabetes research has further strengthened the theory that overall health and dental health are inextricably related; even more so than originally believed.
Pre-diabetes, along with diabetes, is one of the many systemic connections between mouth and body. Denmark researchers found that people who had gum disease – gingivitis or periodontitis – have a higher risk of developing Type 2 diabetes.
Luckily, the study also found that taking care of your teeth and gums could slow down the progression of the disease and in some cases, prevent it all together.
According to the American Diabetes Association, 70 million Americans have pre-diabetes, a condition diagnosed prior to Type 2 diabetes. People with pre-diabetes have blood glucose levels that are higher than normal, but not yet high enough to be diagnosed as diabetes.
It’s not inevitable that you will get Type 2 diabetes if you have pre-diabetes. In fact, some lifestyle changes can help you return your blood glucose levels to the normal range. Losing weight, exercising moderately and even walking just 30 minutes a day will help.
Good food choices and dental hygiene habits help too. If you have pre-diabetes, eat a balanced diet and brush and floss daily. Don’t smoke, and see your dentist regularly for checkups.
Good health starts with a healthy mouth!