Delta Dental of New Jersey and Diabetes Foundation Collaborate for Diabetes Education

Delta Dental of New Jersey and the Diabetes Foundation are partners in educating New Jerseyans on the connection between oral health and overall health. 

According to the American Diabetes Association, approximately 43.6% of New Jersey’s adult population has prediabetes or diagnosed diabetes, and 207,000 people are unaware they have it. 

“When Delta Dental and other amazing organizations collaborate with the Diabetes Foundation, it elevates the holistic conversation about diabetes, from what it means to why you should get tested to monitoring blood sugar levels,” said Ginine Cilenti, executive director at the Diabetes Foundation. “Diabetes management is a learning process and educating individuals living with or at risk of diabetes on the connection between their oral health and their overall health is key.” 

Since 1990, The Diabetes Foundation, based out of Mahwah, NJ, has been working to provide individuals with or at risk of diabetes with the resources and education necessary for long-term and effective diabetes self-management. It provided about 4,000 services to the public last year. 

“Diabetes often gets the most attention during Diabetes Awareness Month, but it’s not just in November when diabetes’ impact on oral health needs to be highlighted for individuals with or at risk of diabetes,” said Dr. Keith Libou, Chief Clinical Officer of Delta Dental of New Jersey. “Delta Dental of New Jersey provides resources and educational information on diabetes and oral health on our website and social media channels, and working with the Diabetes Foundation helps elevate this conversation and hopefully make more New Jersey residents aware of their diabetes risk.” 

Oral health has become known as a crucial determinant of overall health, and diabetes is one of over 120 systemic conditions that a dentist can screen for during an oral exam. Diabetes, left untreated, can cause dry mouth (increasing the risk for cavities), gum disease, and weakened taste buds. 

Delta Dental of New Jersey and Connecticut led the initiative in 2017 to allow dentists to provide an in-office A1C blood test for those at high risk for diabetes or pre-diabetes and to have the test covered under the Delta Dental plan. Results are available within five minutes of the test being administered.