The two-way link between diabetes mellitus and periodontal disease:
Medical health care professional’s clinical practice
Background: Diabetes mellitus and periodontal disease are global
epidemic ailment with severe health consequences. The literature
regarding medical-healthcare professionals’ knowledge, attitude, and
practices regarding periodontal-diabetes disease link from Australia is
missing. Methods: A convenience sample of medical-healthcare
professionals participated in the study to complete an 18-item
questionnaire. An online survey was designed to investigate the
knowledge and understanding of the periodontal disease (gingivitis and
periodontitis) and the link between periodontal disease and diabetes
mellitus. Results: A total of 46 medical professionals completed the
survey. The results of the pilot study demonstrated higher understanding
and awareness of the bidirectional relationship between diabetes
mellitus and periodontal disease among this cohort of medical
professionals. The majority of the medical practitioners (89%) knew
that the glycemic index of persons living with diabetes (having
periodontal disease) could be improved by providing periodontal therapy.
Conclusion: It can be concluded that the investigated cohort is aware of
the association between periodontal disease and diabetes mellitus.
However, this knowledge is not reflected in their clinical practice
resulting in a low frequency of referral and communication with the
dentist. It is the time medical professionals should realise the fact
that “No health without oral health”.