What Does Jaw Pain Mean for Diabetes?

Jaw pain is a common symptom for various conditions, but it is mainly a symptom of dental problems for most. For those with diabetes, jaw pain can be an indication of a more serious underlying issue. It must be immediately evaluated by a dental specialist.


What Causes Jaw Pain in Diabetes?

One of the most common cause behind jaw pain is dental issues. This is of particular concern for those with diabetes. The American Dental Association states that dental problems in diabetics can be due to a tooth decay or periodontal gum disease. In some cases, it can also be due to fungal infections, salivary gland dysfunction, inflammatory skin disease, delayed healing of teeth and infections. Here are some reasons why diabetes patients are susceptible to jaw pain:

  • Those diagnosed with diabetes may have a reduced ability to fight teeth infections. Diabetes patients are more susceptible to all kinds of infections, including gum infections that can trigger pain in the jaw.
  • High level of glucose in the saliva can also encourage bacterial growth and can lead to more tooth decay and a potential pain in the jaw.
  • Focal Neuropathies Is Another Source of Jaw Pain. There are basically four types of neuropathies and these are the autonomic, peripheral, focal and proximal. The kind of neuropathy that affects the jaw area is referred to as the focal neuropathy. Nerve damage can also develop over time for those with diabetes. Although nerve damage or neuropathy may not be showing any symptoms, almost 70 percent of diabetes patients developed neuropathy may show symptoms of numbness, pain in the jaw, tingling or even a loss of feeling in the extremities, digestive tract, organs, as well as the facial features and most especially in the jaw area. Most of the neuropathies will usually occur in people who have been diagnosed with diabetes for at least 25 years. It can also occur in patients who have fluctuating blood glucose levels, including those facing problems with weight and blood pressure.

Taking Precautions of Jaw Pain 

To prevent any dental problems, especially pain in the jaw, you should see a dentist on a regular basis. Furthermore, proper dental care must be observed such as brushing the teeth two to three times a day. When seeing a dentist, it is important to choose those who specialize in diabetic dental care. Check with your doctor for referral to a dentist who can treat diabetes dental problems when necessary.

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