4 Things Diabetics Need To Know About Mucormycosis

Mucormycosis is a fungal infection that can occur inside your mouth. It is an opportunistic infection, which means that it usually takes advantage of people with weakened immune systems. It usually affects people with uncontrolled diabetes. Here's what you need to know about mucormycosis.

What are the signs of mucormycosis?

Mucormycosis causes a variety of different symptoms. The symptoms can include things like a severe, throbbing toothache, swelling on one side of the face, or pus discharge from the nose or oral cavity. As the condition advances, it can cause necrosis (death) of the affected tissues, which can lead to related problems like bone or tooth loss.

Where does the fungi come from?

Mucormycosis is usually caused by a type of fungi called rhizopus. This is a very common fungi, and it can be found many places in nature, like in fruits, vegetables, breads, and peanuts. It can get into your body when you breathe in the spores of this fungi. It's not a problem for people with healthy immune systems, but among immunocompromised people, it can lead to serious infections.

Does diabetes cause mucormycosis?

Diabetes is a known risk factor for this infection. Diabetes helps to cause mucormycosis in a couple different ways. First, excess sugars in your blood act as food for the fungi, which helps the infection spread.

Excess sugars increase your risk of mucormycosis in another way, too. High blood sugar levels weaken your immune system, which makes your body less able to fight off the fungi that cause mucormycosis. The sugars bind to the cells that make up your immune system and make them less able to respond to infections.

Controlling your blood sugar levels will help keep your immune system strong, and help keep you safe from infections like mucormycosis.

Can mucormycosis be treated?

Like other fungal infections, mucormycosis can be treated with antifungal medications. These medications can be given orally or intravenously, and they work by killing the fungi, but they aren't always enough. Sometimes, other treatments like surgical removal of the infected tissue are necessary. These surgeries may need to be repeated multiple times until all of the infected tissue is removed.

Mucormycosis is a serious oral infection that is a concern for people with diabetes. If you have diabetes, it's very important that you keep your blood sugar levels under control. If you notice any changes inside your mouth, make sure to see your dentist right away. 

A group like Sun Dental Group orthodontics can give you more information.