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Dentist Part of Diabetes Team

Oral Health for those with diabetes need to be promoted by collaboration between dental and health care professionals. People with diabetes have a high risk for periodontal disease, which can be considered one of the complications of diabetes.

In a recent study the periodontal treatment needs were evaluated using the Community Periodontal Index of Treatment Needs (CPITN) in relation to diabetes-related factors and oral hygiene.

The study consisted of 120 dentate diabetics, all of whom were regular patients at the Salo Regional Hospital Diabetes Clinic. The nurses, who interviewed the patients, collected data on duration and type of diabetes, complications, and HbA1c level.

Clinical periodontal examination included identification of visible plaque, the presence of calculus and use of the CPITN. The results showed the CPITN score 3 was the most prevalent. According to the logistic regression model, poor metabolic control was significantly related to pathologic pockets. No significant association was found between diabetes-related factors and the highest individual CPITN score of 4, which was, in turn, significantly associated with extensive calculus.

It was concluded that, excessive periodontal treatment needs found, indicate that current dental care may be insufficient in adults with diabetes. Oral health among high-risk groups, especially those with poor metabolic control, should be promoted by collaboration between dental and health care professionals involved in diabetes care. Int Dent J 2002 Apr;52(2):75-80