As many people who are at risk for diabetes visit a dental office regularly, the dental hygiene or dental visit could be a useful opportunity to conduct an initial diabetes screening. This is an important step in identifying those patients who need follow-up testing to diagnose the disease. The ADA guidelines recommend diabetes screening for people at least 45 years of age with a body mass index (BMI) of 25 or more, as well as for those under 45 years of age with a BMI of 25 or more who also have at least one additional diabetes risk factor. We can potentially save lives!References 1. National Diabetes Education Program. The Facts About Diabetes: A Leading Cause Of Death in the U.S. http://ndep.nih.gov/media/fs_gensnapshot.pdf. 2. http://diabetes.niddk.nih.gov/dm/pubs/america/contents.aspx. 3. http://diabetes.niddk.nih.gov/dm/pubs/america/pdf/chapter23.pdf. 4. Genco RJ, Schifferle RE, Dunfod RG, Falkner KL, Hsu WC and Balukjian J. Screening for diabetes mellitus in dental offices: A field trial. JADA 2014; 145 (1):57-64. 10.14219/jada.2013.7. 5. http://www.diabetes.org/are-you-at-risk/diabetes-risk-test/. 6. http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/003640.htm. 7. AlGhamdi AS, Merdad K, Sonbul H, Bukhari SM, Elias WY. Dental clinics as potent sources for screening undiagnosed diabetes and prediabetes. Am J Med Sci. 2013 Apr;345(4):331-4. doi: 10.1097/MAJ.0b013e318287c96c. 8. Beikler T, Kuczek A, Petersilka G, Flemmig TF. In-dental-office screening for diabetes mellitus using gingival crevicular blood. J Clin Periodontol. 2002 Mar;29(3):216-8. 9. Barasch A, Safford MM, Qvist V, Palmore R, Gesko G, and Gilbert GH. Random blood glucose testing in dental practice: A community-based feasibility study from The Dental Practice-Based Research Network. The Journal of the American Dental Association (March 1, 2012) 143,262-269. Gregg H. Gilbert, DDS, MBA, for The Dental Practice-Based Research Network Collaborative Group.
Diabetes is a group of diseases marked by high levels of blood glucose resulting from defects in insulin production, insulin action, or both. Diabetes can lead to serious complications and premature death, but people with diabetes can take steps to control the disease and lower the risk of complications.(1) These are the current diabetes statistics.(1) • 25.8 million Americans have diabetes — 8.3 percent of the U.S. population. Of these, 7 million do not know they have the disease. • In 2010, about 1.9 million people ages 20 or older were diagnosed with diabetes. • The number of people diagnosed with diabetes has risen from 1.5 million in 1958 to 18.8 million in 2010, an increase of epidemic proportions. • It is estimated that 79 million adults aged 20 and older have pre-diabetes. Pre-diabetes is a condition where blood glucose levels are higher than normal but not high enough to be called diabetes. Studies have shown that by losing weight and increasing physical activity people can prevent or delay pre-diabetes from progressing to diabetes.