If You Have Diabetes, Here's What You Need To Know About Root Canals

Root canals are an important procedure in a dentist's repertoire, and with the right care, a root canal can potentially save your existing tooth. However, if you have diabetes, it's important for you to know that you will need to take extra steps to communicate with your doctor and dentist prior to having a root canal procedure. Here are the problems diabetes can cause and how your dentist can make sure that you don't develop a problem following a root canal.

Slowed Healing

If you have diabetes, one of the biggest problems for any kind of surgery or dental work is that you may experience delayed healing. Diabetes can slow the rate at which your body heals from wounds, injuries, or surgery. The reason for this is that a high blood sugar level can cause the arteries and veins to stiffen, reducing the amount of blood flow throughout the body. This means that the blood and oxygen your tissues need to heal will be diminished, which can slow the rate of healing.

Lack of Nerve Sensation

In some cases, especially if diabetes isn't well-controlled, sensation can be lost in the body. This is due to a disorder called diabetic neuropathy. In short, the nerves throughout your body are responsible for sending signals to your brain when you're touched, hurt, cold, and so forth. With diabetic neuropathy, you may not experience these sensations as strongly or at all. This can cause problems, as most healthy patients can tell if a wound still hurts or the pain level increases, which is one of the first warning signs that there's an infection.

Work with Your Dentist

If you have diabetes, you don't need to worry about whether or not your mouth will heal, but you will need to work with your dentist to make sure that it does.

Dentists work with diabetics all the time, as diabetes is becoming more and more common in the United States. If you're seeing a new dentist or oral surgeon, you should tell them about your history of diabetes, and if possible, provide your average blood sugar level for their records.

Your dentist will most likely want to see you for check-ups more often than if you were completely healthy. This is a necessity if you have diabetes to examine the root canal site and to make sure that everything is healing and recovering properly. Even if you have poor circulation or can't feel the site well, your dentist will be able to tell if everything is going according to plan.

If your blood sugar is very high, your dentist may cooperate with your doctor to find a medication to help bring your blood sugar down to more normal levels. Alternatively, your dentist may ask you to fast prior to having your root canal to keep your blood sugar at a lower level to improve tissue circulation and healing time.

Having diabetes doesn't mean that you can't have surgery or dental procedures like root canals. Make sure to communicate your concerns and health history with your dentist and you'll be in good hands. For more information, visit sites like http://www.apollodentalcenter.com.