Health

Type 2 diabetes warning: Does your breath smell? It could be a sign of high blood sugar l

Persistent high blood sugar levels could result in more sugar in your saliva. As bacteria grows, acid is produced which attacks your tooth enamel and damages your gums. Is your dental issues down to diabetes?

One mouth issue linked to type 2 diabetes, as pointed out by Diabetes UK, is periodontitis.

Periodontitis is an infection in the soft tissue and bone that supports the teeth.

An early warning sign of the condition is bad breath, as well as redness and soreness.

The Mayo Clinic goes into more depth about periodontitis – also known as gum disease.

Without treatment, the condition can cause teeth to loosen and lead to tooth loss.

Healthy gums are firm, pale pink and fit snugly around the teeth. Gum disease, on the other hand, shows up in a variety of ways.

For instance, swollen or puffy gums can be a sign of gum disease, as can bright red, dusky red or purplish gums.

Other symptoms of gum disease include gums that feel tender when touched, or gums that bleed easily.

This may result in a pink-tinged toothbrush after brushing, or spitting out blood when brushing or flossing your teeth.

Disturbingly, there may be pus between the teeth and gums. Another clue you have gum disease is if it's painful to chew.

Eventually, there will be new spaces developing between your teeth, receding gums or a change in the way your teeth fit together when you bite.

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Diabetes UK noted the other mouth conditions diabetes is linked to, including:

Tooth decayGingivitisDry mouthOral thrushAbscesses

In order to protect your teeth, and have your breath smelling minty fresh, there are things you can do.

It's vital to get into the habit of brushing your twice at least twice a day.

This will help to keep the plaque off your teeth – and flossing will help too.


Although free dental check-ups are not included in your diabetes treatment plan, it's still important to regularly see the dentist.

If you wear dentures, make sure to clean them regularly to prevent oral thrush.

If you smoke, your immune system will be weaker than a non-smoker's, meaning it'll be harder for the body to fight a gum infection.

Smoking also makes it harder for the gums to heal if you currently have gum disease.

To help keep your blood sugar levels in check (and tooth decay at bay), utilise technology.

A finger-prick test, or continuous glucose monitor, will tell you if you need to reduce your blood sugar levels.

If you have type 2 diabetes, aim between 4-7mmol/l before meals and less than 8.5mmol/l two hours after a meal.

Medication, eating healthily and exercise are key when managing your reading.



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