Periodontitis and diabetes: Navigating a two-way street

Individuals with periodontitis have a 50% increased risk of developing diabetes. The risk and severity of periodontitis is increased by two- to threefold in people with diabetes.  (3 Credits)

The relationship between periodontitis and diabetes has been well documented. Periodontitis is characterized by chronic inflammation and an accumulation of bacteria involving the gingiva and alveolar bone. Individuals with periodontitis have a 50% increased risk of developing diabetes. The risk and severity of periodontitis is increased by two- to threefold in people with diabetes. 

This bidirectional relationship can be linked to chronic inflammation and altered autoimmune responses. In patients with uncontrolled diabetes, nonsurgical periodontal therapy has been associated with improved hemoglobin A1c. Further studies imply a decrease in diabetes-related health-care costs after periodontal therapy. Therefore, dental and medical professionals have an integral role in supporting disease management by implementing strategies in the clinical setting. 


Upon completion of this course, the dental professional should be able to: 

  1. Recognize and discuss the bidirectional relationship between periodontitis and diabetes. 
  2. Identify and list blood glucose and A1c goals for patients with diabetes to improve periodontitis. 
  3. Exhibit increased confidence when educating patients with diabetes and periodontitis. 
  4. Implement strategies into daily dental and medical practice to improve clinical outcomes.

About the Authors

Nykkia Sellers, DNP, FNP, BC-ADM, CDCES, is a board-certified family nurse practitioner who practices in adult endocrinology and specializes in diabetes management. Nykkia is the founder and owner of Diabetes Care and Wellness. She earned a master’s degree in nursing from Arkansas State University in 2007. She then obtained a Doctor of Nursing Practice degree from the University of South Alabama. Nykkia is a certified diabetes care and education specialist and is board certified in advanced diabetes management.

Tameka Schley Lee, MPA, RDH, has more than two decades of service in the dental field. In 2003, she earned a bachelor’s degree in dental hygiene from Clayton State University, and then went on to obtain a master’s degree in public administration from Grand Canyon University in 2021. With a profound passion for oral health and relentless drive to enhance health outcomes, Tameka has donned multiple hats throughout her career. Her visionary spirit and dedication culminated in the establishment of Empower, RDH, a consulting company tailored to dental hygiene clinicians.

Image credit:  TefiM / iStock / Getty Images Plus
Quick Access Code: 22196

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Course Includes

  • 1 Lesson
  • 1 Test
  • Course Certificate
  • CE credit(s): 3

    Course Type: Written

    Published Date: March 2024

    This continuing education (CE) activity was developed by Endeavor Business Media with no commercial support.

    This course was written for dentists, dental hygienists, and dental assistants, from novice to skilled.

    Educational methods: This course is a self-instructional journal and web activity.

    Provider disclosure: Endeavor Business Media neither has a leadership position nor a commercial interest in any products or services discussed or shared in this educational activity. No manufacturer or third party had any input in the development of the course content.

    Requirements for successful completion: To obtain 3 CE credits for this educational activity, you must pay the required fee, review the material, complete the course evaluation, and obtain an exam score of 70% or higher.

    CE planner disclosure: Laura Winfield, Endeavor Business Media dental group CE coordinator, neither has a leadership nor commercial interest with the products or services discussed in this educational activity. Ms. Winfield can be reached at

    Educational disclaimer: Completing a single continuing education course does not provide enough information to result in the participant being an expert in the field related to the course topic. It is a combination of many educational courses and clinical experience that allows the participant to develop skills and expertise.

    Image authenticity statement: The images in this educational activity have not been altered.

    Scientific integrity statement: Information shared in this CE course is developed from clinical research and represents the most current information available from evidence-based dentistry.

    Known benefits and limitations of the data: The information presented in this educational activity is derived from the data and information contained in the reference section.

    Registration: The cost of this CE course is $39.00 for 3 CE credits.

    Cancellation and refund policy: Any participant who is not 100% satisfied with this course can request a full refund by contacting Endeavor Business Media in writing.

    Provider information:

    Dental Board of California: Provider RP5933. Course registration number CA code: 03-5933-22196. Expires February 2027. “This course meets the Dental Board of California’s requirements for 3 units of continuing education.”


    Endeavor Business Media is a nationally approved PACE program provider for FAGD/MAGD credit.
    Approval does not imply acceptance by any regulatory authority or AGD endorsement.
    11/1/2022 to 10/31/2024.
    Provider ID# 320452
    AGD code: 490, 750


    Endeavor Business Media is designated as an approved Provider by the American Academy of Dental Hygiene, Inc. #AADHPNW (January 1, 2022–December 31, 2024). Approval does not imply acceptance by a state or provincial Board of Dentistry. Licensee should maintain this document in the event of an audit. AADH code: AADHEBM-174-3-2024-3


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