You’ve had the same experience, I’m sure. A friend or coworker shares with you that a family member is struggling with a major health issue. It happens to me frequently as I tend to meet dozens of new people every week whether in clinical hygiene practice, in a client office or when I’m teaching a live workshop.
In the last couple weeks, I’ve had 2 people share that their parent is suffering from kidney failure or heart disease. And so after sharing concern, I ask questions.
Here’s EXACTLY how the conversation went recently. I am not making this up!
My friend (who also happens to be a patient of mine): “Please pray for my Dad. He has terminal kidney disease and needs a transplant soon.”
Me: “I sure will. Tell me, does your Dad have a history of Diabetes?”
My friend: “Yes, actually he does and he doesn’t eat right or take care of himself.”
Me: “Has he had a history of heart disease?”
My friend: “Yes, he’s on a ton of medication for his heart.”
Me: “Do you know anything about the health of his gums.”
My friend: “Oh, he has terrible gum disease and never goes to the dentist.”
HELLOOOOO…can you say REAL LIFE EXAMPLE?
Now I’m not saying the perio caused all these problems.
However, it has been well documented that Diabetes and Periodontal Disease have a two-way relationship. If periodontal disease is active it makes it harder to control diabetes and vice versa. There’s also mounting evidence that active perio disease significantly increases a diabetic’s risk for major health events like heart attack and kidney failure.
CLICK HERE for a reference article on this connection.
So, here’s the sign that was posted in my doctor’s office. It similar to one I shared with you before. Many of our clients share this with their patients. And don’t forget the #1 question to ask your Diabetic patients…What was your last HbA1c?
So if you want PROOF of the oral-systemic link, it’s easy…just ask around!