A study by the Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston has shown that men that suffer from diabetes are more likely to lose their teeth, as compared with those who do not have the disease.
The research examined the connections between diabetes and tooth loss or gum disease in more than 38,000 men between 1986 and 2006. At the beginning of the testing, all participants had their own teeth and showed no signs of periodontitis, an advanced stage of gum disease. During the study, there were 11,478 new cases of tooth loss and 3,589 new cases of periodontitis.
Once risk factors for gum disease, including age, race, body mass index, diet, physical exercise, smoking and drinking were taken into consideratio, type 2 diabetes was found to be the common factor which increased tooth loss by half.
Nigel Carter, Chief Executive of the British Dental Health Foundatio, said “These results are quite shocking, although we have known for many years that diabetics are more likely to suffer from gum disease, the extent of the increase in such a large study is surprising. Recent studies have also shown a potential link between the presence of gum disease and development of diabetes so this is a particularly interesting area.”
However, diet was also found to contribute to the increased gum disease, as it was reported that diabetic men below average amounts of fruit and vegetables were twice as likely to get periodontitis compared with men with the same fruit and vegetable intake but no diabetes.

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