Type 2 Diabetes – Inflammatory Molecules Present in Diabetics With Periodontitis

Periodontitis is inflammation and infection of the gums and soft tissue surrounding the teeth. Although anyone can get the disease without proper dental hygiene, Type 2 diabetics are particularly susceptible. High blood sugar levels could be responsible for allowing bacteria to grow – infection leads to inflammation. More and more, inflammatory molecules are being found to influence the complications associated with this form of diabetes. Scientists at the University of Bergen in Norway and several other research institutions in Norway, Sudan, and Qatar looked at inflammatory molecules and their possible contribution to periodontitis in adult Type 2 diabetics.

Their study, reported on in the journal BMC Oral Health in June 2015, tested for twenty-seven inflammatory molecules in the mouths of 108 participants…

54 participants had Type 2 diabetes and periodontitis,
24 had Type 2 diabetes and no issues with their dental hygiene, and
30 of the participants had chronic periodontitis alone.
It was found the participants with diabetes and those with diabetes and periodontitis, had different levels of certain inflammatory molecules than the participants who had periodontitis alone. Molecules involved in telling white blood cells what kind of germ to fight, differed according to whether the person had Type 2 diabetes…

the participants who did have diabetes had a higher ratio of molecules telling white cells to attack germs inside cells.
those who did not have Type 2 diabetes had a higher ratio of molecules telling white blood cells to attack germs in their saliva and blood stream.
diabetics whose HbA1c levels were high also had the highest amounts of molecules causing inflammation, and as HbA1c levels went down, so did the inflammatory molecules.
From these results it was concluded both Type 2 diabetes and periodontitis might influence inflammatory molecules and the immune system. Both Type 2 diabetes and periodontitis appeared to work together in influencing the immune system and inflammation.

Further research will likely find a way to use the immune system and various molecules to prevent and treat chronic periodontitis. The present state of the art process relies upon good hygiene…

use a soft-bristled toothbrush, preferably after every meal.
flossing is equally important. Wrap the floss half-way round the tooth and move the floss up and down. Be sure to get all teeth, including the back molars.
visit the dentist for an inspection and cleaning twice a year – or as advised by your dentist or physician.
avoid refined sugar for the benefit of every part of your body.
Although managing your disease can be very challenging, Type 2 diabetes is not a condition you must just live with. You can make simple changes to your daily routine and lower both your weight and your blood sugar levels. Hang in there, the longer you do it, the easier it gets.

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