Date of Award

Spring 2021


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Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS) in Dental Hygiene


Dental Hygiene


Purpose: Studies have shown that periodontal therapy can help manage diabetes and that powered toothbrushes promote better home care. However, there is no literature making the connection whether powered toothbrushes could assist in blood glucose management in diabetic patients. The primary aim for this study was to evaluate the efficacy of brushing with a powered toothbrush in patients with diabetes mellitus.

Methods: This clinical study included 8 (N = 8) adult participants from Willamette Dental group in Richland, WA. The individuals were asked to participate in a 6-week study testing whether brushing with a powered toothbrush affected their blood glucose levels and their perception on diabetes self-management. Each person in the study brushed with a manual toothbrush for one week and then brushed with a powered toothbrush for five weeks. Participants were asked pre- and post-questions on their diabetes management, brushing habits and on questions related to their blood glucose. Submissions were anonymously entered using an online survey software known as SurveyMonkey.

Results: There was no statistically significant difference in blood sugar week-to-week or between week 1 and week 6 according to the p values. The p values resulted in p > .05 for all weeks analyzed. The findings for this study regarding the pre- and post-selfmanagement survey indicated no statistical significance as well. The perception of brushing twice daily was the closest to having significance with a p value of p = 0.59 from the pre to the post Diabetes Self-Management Questionnaire.

Conclusion: Results of the study showed no significance effect in using a powered toothbrush for oral home care in attempting to manage blood glucose readings for diabetic patients. However, there was perceived improvement in self-management of diabetes. Future research is needed to determine the correlation between powered toothbrushes and diabetes.