Diabetes Christmas Dinner
Two days after Kaw Nation filled the Johnny Ray McCauley gym for the tribal Christmas party, the Diabetes Program of the Kanza Health Clinic brought together people struggling with the disease to celebrate the upcoming holiday and share educational information on Tuesday. Nurse Cindy Wilson’s program gathered 48 people for the dinner.
The dinner included beef tenderloin, green beans, salad potatoes and cake.
Dentist Dr. Richard Jackson gave an address on diabetes and oral health. He opened with a story about a patient who was on dialysis due to complications resulting from a combination of dental problems and diabetes.
Dr. Jackson said that dental problems come as a result of gum tissue not receiving enough oxygen. Then, gums degenerate.
Diabetics suffer from dry mouth. Dr. Jackson explained that with dry mouth, teeth aren’t able to bathe in saliva like they should. This causes diabetes to get out of control.
To keep gum tissue healthy, Dr. Jackson said that diabetics need to brush, floss and use a water pick. The water pick is particularly helpful in removing food particles from between teeth.
“If you keep teeth healthy, you keep your gum tissue healthy,” he said.
Dr. Jackson encouraged people to always eat and take medications before going to dental appointments.
“Come to us as healthy as you can,” he said. “Take all your medication and eat before coming to the dentist.”
Dr. Jackson closed with an inspirational message for diabetics to strive towards normal health.
“If you take care of your blood sugar, you’re normal, you’re healthy,” he said. “Let your dentist help you. Let your physician help you.”