• Vol. 35 No. 8, 571–581
  • 15 August 2006

Diabetes as a Risk Factor for Periodontal Disease: Current Status and Future Considerations



Introduction: Over the past decade, there has been an emerging interest in the interrelationship between systemic conditions and oral health. Diabetes is perhaps one of the best documented conditions that have been closely linked with periodontal disease. This paper reviews the role of diabetes as a risk factor in periodontal disease. The treatment implications in the management of periodontal disease as an integral component of diabetes care is also discussed in light of the current understanding of the pathogenesis of these 2 chronic conditions.

Materials and Methods: Epidemiological, clinical and laboratory studies examining the relationship between diabetes and periodontal diseases were selected from both medical and dental journals.

Results: The severity of periodontal destruction has been shown to be related to the direct and indirect effects of glycaemic control, with other factors also being implicated. Although some studies have pointed towards a bi-directional relationship between glycaemic control and periodontal health, it is still not clear if improvement in periodontal health could lead to improved metabolic control.

Conclusion: Diabetes and periodontal disease are closely related in many ways, though the effect of periodontal disease on diabetes control remain to be determined, with larger intervention studies. In light of the increasing evidence of the relationship between diabetes and periodontal disease, management of oral health should form an integral part of diabetes management.

Diabetes mellitus (DM) is a common and growing global health problem. It is highly prevalent in Asian communities. Hong Kong, Pakistan, and Singapore are among the countries with the highest prevalence of diabetes in the adult population.

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