A Common Diabetes Drug For Treating Gum Disease
A Common Diabetes Drug For Treating Gum Disease
For the statistic of gum disease, just pretty much double that.
Often, unfortunately, astoundingly and confoundingly those last two go hand-in-hand.
Like the chicken and the egg, with no point arguing about which came first.
Doing that equates to a heated debate on whether global warming pipped climate change at the post when it’s a race that has no winners.
Somewhere amid this is a good joke where a chicken farmer, a geneticist and a philosopher walk into a bar. Nobody remembers who’s on first or what’s on second; the punchline is the witnessed punch-up between a featherweight and a shell of a man, settling the domestic fowl-and-egg dilemma.
The result may not be what you think.
The chicken farmer will tell you that it is the egg that came first.
How, you may ask? Because whatever laid the egg that held the chicken didn’t have to be a chicken.
We already know that eggs predate chickens. So if, for instance a jungle fowl had produced the egg from which the much-debated chicken emerged, it’s not a jungle fowl egg.
It’s a chicken egg because it has a chicken in it.
The geneticist will say that the resultant DNA-deviant jungle fowl that reached the maturity to lay that elusive egg is responsible for the initial chicken’s egg – which makes the chicken come first…
… until the philosopher ponders whether or not a chicken egg is the same as a chicken’s egg.
Does it matter which came first? They’re both here now.
When you first think of dentistry, is it cost and fear that comes to mind? Or the determination at any cost, to have straight, white teeth and healthy gums?
Neither thought changes the fact that dental care is not included in mainstream healthcare.
Despite the research. And regardless of the evidence that proves good oral health is necessary in order to live a life of secure identity, and general state of physical and psychological wellbeing.
Worldwide, 3.5 billion people suffer from oral disease because public health inaction makes dental care an unaffordable luxury for many.
It is an area of global neglect, that at the same time distinctly recognises its reverberating social and economic impact.
Almost everyone at some point in their life will have experienced an oral issue that only a dentist is properly trained and equipped to treat. Were it not that 6-monthly check-ups were so prohibitive for many, the plaque would be dealt with, the gingivitis not occur, and there would be no resultant periodontal disease affecting teeth, nutrition, heart health, brain health, sense of self, life and longevity.
That the lack of affordability for, and accessibility to preventative expertise and oral care treatments has never been seriously challenged makes all other healthcare services seriously deficient.
Diseases attributed as the cause of death for the majority of the population have been largely considered as the unfortunate outcome of unhealthy lifestyle choices.
Too much red meat. Too few fruits and not enough vegetables. Drinking. Smoking. No exercise regimen. All the stuff that makes disease more likely, and having any disease makes getting more of them inevitable.
On average, it will be reported and recorded that 80% of people die from the complications of either cancer, heart disease, Alzheimer’s or diabetes.
Health professionals have made ‘bad habits’ and unlucky genes the disease punching bags for decade upon decade.
Until now. Evidence suggests bacteria is the culprit.
It’s a medical revolution that still doesn’t give oral health a turn. When we already know the importance of microbiome of the mouth, and the access to the bloodstream that gums provide.
Currently, the most common treatment for gum disease is a course of antibiotics and supragingival scaling. Essentially, it’s a deep, invasive and uncomfortable clean below the gum line in an effort to rid the mouth of the periodontitis pathogens.
It’s not a treatment that eradicates the disease, nor does it stop the development of systemic disorders, like diabetes.
Which may or may not, have come first.
What is a first, is using a pharmaceutical sugar metaboliser for diabetes in dentistry.
It showed improved oral treatment outcomes even with high levels of bacteria. Metformin controlled sugar levels, and significantly reduced inflammation in the mouth and body.
As a new and incredibly efficient treatment for gum disease, it has the ability to also control weight.
Potentially, it’s an oral and systemic disease preventative in one.
Metformin is a prescription drug, readily available and extremely affordable worldwide; regardless of medical insurance or pharmaceutical benefit schemes.
Metformin may form part of the much-needed meta-position on health, where there is no longer the deadly divide between dental and medical wellbeing. It presents the perfect opportunity for a radical shift in the global health agenda.
Will a prescription from the dentist be a weight loss treatment too? That diabetes script from the doctor – does it also deal with periodontitis?
It doesn’t matter which comes first. What matters right now is that dental healthcare loses its stark inequity.
Try saying that with gum disease.
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