How does smoking affect diabetes? This is a very interesting subject and one in which any diabetic who smokes should learn all about.
Basically, diabetes affects the blood system by narrowing the small blood vessels in the circulation system. This affects all the organs of the body but seems to affect certain organs more aggressively especially the organs that depend on the smallest blood vessels.
Smoking causes the constriction of blood vessels which can aggravate the already narrowing of the blood vessels cause by the diabetes. So a diabetic should never smoke and if they are already smokers, they should quit as quickly as possible.
The kidneys are affected by diabetes because of the damage that can be done to the small blood vessels which are needed to filter the blood. This can damage the kidneys and even damage the kidneys so badly that they fail to function.
Diabetics have problems with their feet. This is because of nerve damage in the feet and the narrowing of blood vessels in the legs. These two problems can cause a tiny cut to become extremely infected and lead to gangrene of the foot. Gangrene can lead to amputation of the foot or leg. With poor circulation, when there is a cut or any damage, there is insufficient blood flowing to the foot to fight the infection.
In the eyes of diabetics, an eye disease called diabetic retinopathy can develop which can lead to bad vision and even blindness. This is because of narrowing of the blood vessels in the back of the eyes which get weak and can lead to blood and fluid leaking into the retina from these weakened blood vessels. The retina is the part of the eye that sends visual images to the brain.
Diabetes oral care is another very important area of management for people who have this chronic disease. Because of the problems with blood sugar, diabetics have a higher than normal amount of dental care problems. This is because the diabetes when not under control reduces the number of white blood cells in the blood to fight infections in the mouth.
There are several areas that cause problems. One of these is the problem of dry mouth caused by decreased saliva. This can cause tooth decay, mouth ulcers and infections.
Another major problem is gum disease commonly known as gingivitis and periodontitis. This is caused by fewer white blood cells in the blood to fight infections as well as the thickening of blood vessels which slows the flow of blood which carries nutrients to the mouth area and waste away from the mouth area. Gum disease is caused by infections of the gums so these can cause gum disease to be much more severe and harder to control in people who suffer with diabetes.
There is also the problem of healing after any dental surgery or dental procedures because of the problem of blood flow to this area. .
How does smoking affect diabetes? By further constricting small blood vessels which are already narrowing by the diabetes itself.