Dentists in New Jersey are now able to test blood and bill the patient for diabetes . This seems like a good start to recognizing a possible role for the oral health professions in managing this major epidemic.

But telling a patient he or she is diabetic or pre-diabetic while visiting the dentist, is a long way from getting on top of this disease. Indeed, the patient is likely to say “so what do we do about it?” when told the bad news.

Two intervention studies show that there is really quite a bit which can be done by the dental team to help the diabetic patient. As reported, a session of scaling and root planing (SRP) can lower blood sugars for between one and three months — an interval when another dental session can be arranged.

But the jury is still out about the long term benefits of SRP. And there are the usual issues of invasive care — cost and discomfort.

We have noticed remarkable results with Prevora in high risk periodontal patients. In 2018, we are going to see if Prevora can, like SRP, benefit diabetes management.

 

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