The aim of the study was to compare salivary flow rate, salivary pH, buffer capacity of the saliva, salivary glucose content, and number of Candida albicans, lactobacilli, and Streptococcus mutans in the saliva in age- and sex-matched adult long- and short-duration insulin-dependent diabetics and non-diabetics. Ninety-four long-duration and 86 short-duration diabetics and 86 non-diabetics, aged 20-70 years, participated in the study. Paraffin-stimulated whole saliva was collected. Both long- and short-duration diabetics had a decreased salivary flow rate and an increased salivary glucose content compared with non-diabetics. However, the differences were small. There were no significant differences between the groups in salivary pH, buffer capacity, or bacterial counts.