According to a new research led by the Columbia University researchers, people will have one more reason to check with their dentist on a more regular basis. The report which has been published in the Journal of Dental Research (July 2011 issue), says that researchers from the College of Dental Medicine have actually developed a new method which will diagnose diabetes in its early stages.
More precisely, researchers pointed out that oral exams are extremely useful in detecting diabetes.
In order to put their theory at test, a research has been conducted by expert Evanthia Lalla. For this study there have been selected 601 individuals who were actually looking for dental treatment at a clinic. Out of the total number of individuals, there were 535 who said they were presenting at least one risk factor for diabetes. Then, they have been offered a hemoglobin test and a periodontal exam.
In order to help identify diabetes, researchers used a model with two dental variables. As a study outcome, they have used the FPG test (fasting plasma glucose)- it is important to mention that FPG is basically used for screenings of pre-diabetes and diabetes.
The research team concluded that the presence of deep pockets and at least four teeth missing are an indicator of diabetes. Given the results of this study, researchers were able to conclude that dental health professionals can clearly identify patients who struggle with pre-diabetes or diabetes, and of course they can refer them to a specialty physician for further tests and treatment.
If diabetes is diagnosed in its early stage, treatment is more effective and thousands of lives can be saved if the disease is detected early. Currently, there are around 350 million people worldwide who are struggling with Type II diabetes.
It is extremely important that people will not put off their regular dental checkups, because such severe conditions can be found in their incipient stage and then the road to recovery is much easier and quicker. If nothing else, reading this article should be enough convincing to make you schedule your next appointment with your dentist, and see if everything is in order.