At Rockingham Dental Centre we all aim to be lifelong learners – there’s plenty we don’t know but that’s not going to stop us finding out.
So, it was a full house when Dr Jane McCarthy visited Rockingham Dental after surgery hours back in October to talk to us about diabetes. Some of you may know Jane – she tends to see many of our periodontal patients – and it was good to get a chance to quiz her on some of the interesting aspects of her specialisation.
Of course, not all patients with gum disease have diabetes, but diabetes patients do suffer from a higher incidence of periodontal infections. Bleeding gums are often the first sign of a problem – healthy gums do not bleed at all – they are caused by an accumulation of bacteria at the gum line that prompts the gum to become inflamed.
Eventually this inflammation destroys ligaments, gum and the bone that holds the teeth in the jaw. Left untreated, this loss of bone leads first to loosening of the teeth, and then finally to the tooth falling out. For all of us, bleeding gums are a sign that shouldn’t be ignored – often all that is required is a bit of advice on the correct brushing technique – but do talk to your dentist if it’s something that concerns you.