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    Middle-Aged Americans Experiencing Troubled Teeth

    Untitled design (1)A new national poll shows that one in three Americans aged 50 to 64 years old are embarrassed by the condition of their teeth. In addition, they report dental issues have caused them problems and/or pain over the course of the last two years.   Problems accessing or paying for dental care are not new to Americans, but studies usually report on children or the elderly. The University of Michigan’s National Poll on Healthy Aging took a look at middle-aged people and how their oral health is faring. Insurance was identified by the survey as one of the potential reasons for lack of care -- 28 percent of those surveyed reported not having any dental insurance. Among the respondents who reported only seeking dental care when a serious problem arises, 56 percent had no dental insurance. Things don’t look up for this demographic as they age, either -- 13 percent of...
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    Research Explains Why Diabetes Patients Are Vulnerable to Gum Disease

    shutterstock_631495091Dentists, doctors and medical researchers have known for years that a link exists between diabetes and periodontitis, or gum disease, but they’ve struggled with pinpointing the exact origin of the connection. New research indicates that the connection has to do with changes in the oral microbiome (the collection of bacteria and other microbes that live in our mouths) of diabetes patients once blood sugar rises and hyperglycemia develops.   How Does Gum Disease Develop? Diabetes weakens the body’s immune system, so patients are already more susceptible to infection, said Dr. John Pappas, DDS, of Arcadia Dental Arts in Phoenix, Arizona. "Poor oral hygiene can lead to a buildup of bacteria and plaque on and around teeth," he said. "The first stage of gum disease, called gingivitis, becomes evident with bleeding, swollen and red gums in many cases." According to Pappas, this first stage of gum disease is reversible with proper care....
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