I was blessed with naturally strong and straight teeth. But I screwed up…. and now I will pay a price.
I’ve had one cavity my whole life. Of course that ONE cavity had to be a huge pain in the ass. It was in a horrible place and the filling cracked twice, which led to a root canal, which led to an abscess years later, which led to massive pain and the tooth being extracted. So for most of my life I’ve had no fillings, no silver, nothing. Just my natural teeth.
After the fall I had over four years ago that resulted in five stitches in my lip and a minor surgery a couple years after that to correct the scar, I neglected my teeth. After all the trauma my mouth went through I couldn’t bring myself to get to the dentist. I guess I thought my naturally strong teeth would be fine on their own with my regular brushing. I finally saw a dentist today after much urging from my hubby and reminders from our family dentist… and found out I have 3 baby cavities as a result of my neglect. GRRRRR. I’ll never let THAT go again. Gone are my silver/filling free teeth. 😦
I also found out as a diabetic it’s more important to keep up on the cleanings and regular visits to the dentist. When I got home I researched this and found that:
1. Individuals with diabetes are more susceptible to the development of oral infections and periodontal disease than those who do not have diabetes. (source)
2. Some people with diabetes will experience a dry mouth. I experienced this a lot before I was diagnosed with diabetes. A dry mouth can increase your risk of cavities, because there’s less saliva to wash away germs and take care of the acids they create. (source)
3. Dental care is particularly important for people with diabetes because they face a higher than normal risk of oral health problems due to poorly controlled blood sugars. The less well controlled the blood sugar, the more likely oral health problems will arise. This is because uncontrolled diabetes impairs white blood cells, which are the body’s main defense against bacterial infections that can occur in the mouth. (source)
We don’t know how long my blood sugars were uncontrolled, but we guess at least 2 years. So I imagine this is some of the cause, but mostly it’s my own stupid fault for not keeping up on my dental care. 😦
It’s just another reminder that I DO need to stop taking care of everyone else once in a while to take care of myself: Keep working on the weight loss (I’m thinking of getting an elliptical machine), keeping my blood sugars under control, and now scheduling regular cleanings and checkups with my dentist.
[tags]dentist, diabetes and oral health, diabetes and dental care, teeth, cavities[/tags]