Diabetes and Braces
Diabetes can affect many aspects of your body, including your teeth, gums, and mouth. Unfortunately, it is a common health problem, as more than 30 million adults and 1.25 million children in the United States have diabetes. While it is important for everyone to take good care of their oral health, it is especially important if you have diabetes. According to the Centers for Disease Control, diabetes can take a toll on your oral health due the many side effects of having high blood sugar.
High blood sugar can weaken white blood cells, reducing your body’s ability to fight off infection. It also takes your body longer to heal. Additionally, if you have high levels of sugar in your blood, you will also have high levels of sugar in your saliva, which acts as a feeding ground for bacteria in plaque. Over time this results in gum disease, cavities, and other problems with your teeth and gums. Given the extra precautions you must take to protect your oral health if you have diabetes, you will also want to understand the relationship between diabetes and braces.
Can a Diabetic Person Get Braces?
The good news is a diabetic person can get braces if extra steps are taken to protect their oral health. The relationship between diabetes and braces is closely correlated, as those with diabetes are more likely to need orthodontic treatment due to the movement of teeth that comes along with bone loss. Those with diabetes are more prone to developing periodontal disease, which adds stress on the gums. Braces can also add stress to the gums due to the movement of teeth, so it’s important to take the following precautions:
- Inform your orthodontist: At Milnor Orthodontics, we consider our patients’ entire medical history when creating their orthodontic treatment plan.
- Brush and floss after every meal or at least twice a day, whichever is more frequent.
- Don’t smoke.
Can a Diabetic Person Use Invisalign?
A diabetic person can consider Invisalign for an orthodontic treatment option. Similar to braces, patients must commit to the orthodontist’s instructions for cleaning and wearing the aligners, and maintaining good oral health during treatment. Diabetic persons can experience great success with Invisalign by:
- Cleaning your Invisalign clear retainers daily.
- Using a recommended oral rinse to prevent the accumulation of bacteria.
- Following up with regular check-ups with your orthodontist.
Does Diabetes Weaken Your Teeth?
Diabetes can take its toll on your oral health in several ways, including:
- Increased likelihood of periodontal disease, which can result in inflamed gums and tooth loss
- Reduced saliva, which can cause sores, ulcers, and infections
- Weakened ability to ward off infection and infections can take longer to heal
- Accelerated erosion of gum bones, resulting in teeth movement and misalignment
Overall, practicing good dental hygiene prior to beginning orthodontic treatment is paramount. A study published in the Journal of Clinical Medical Research found that maintaining tight control over glycemic states and practicing good oral health practices prior to seeking treatment offers the most substantial protective factor against poor dental health. Schedule a consultation with Dr. Milnor with Milnor Orthodontics to get started on your best path for orthodontic treatment.
At Milnor Orthodontics, our experts are here to help you achieve a priceless smile. Call our office at (970) 484-3214 or visit milnororthodontics.com to learn more. We're located at 1103 S. Shields St. in Fort Collins, Colorado.