There’s no getting around eating and drinking and the consequences these actions can have on our teeth. In order to have a healthy, balanced diet, your teeth are going to have to work, and with that, they’re going to become damaged over time. Thankfully, by adding in a few special foods to your diet, you can help reduce the harmful effects of food on your teeth while enjoying tasty meals.
What are Superfoods?
Superfoods. You may have heard this word thrown around a lot, whether in person, on the television, or even in the magazines in the grocery store checkout, but chances are, you’re not too sure what it means exactly. Superfoods are those foods that are nutritionally dense – meaning they’re packed full of the good stuff with little to no harmful ingredients.
They are foods that provide a wide variety of nutrients such as antioxidants, vitamins, and healthy fats while not adding any additional sugars or bad fats into your diet. More often than not, the foods that fall into this category are fruits and vegetables.
How Do Superfoods Impact My Health?
Superfoods full of antioxidants can help improve your health and are even thought to help prevent cancer by binding the free radicals within your body. Finally, superfoods are full of vitamins and minerals that keep your body running smoothly and efficiently.
How Are Superfoods Good For My Teeth?
Our teeth need a lot more than brushing, flossing, and regular dentist appointments to stay healthy. One of the most important minerals that superfoods can provide for our teeth is calcium. Calcium is responsible for building a healthy, strong jaw as well as healthy teeth. However, in order to work, calcium requires phosphorus, another mineral found in superfoods. Phosphorus acts with calcium to make sure your teeth are as strong as they need to be to handle day to day activities. Finally, Vitamin D both regulates calcium and phosphorus intake and helps reduce the inflammation that is associated with periodontal – or gum – disease. To learn more about how superfoods can improve your dental health, contact our practice today!
Beyond Calcium, What’s the Importance of Vitamin D and K2?
Vitamin D deficiency is a very common problem today because of our modern diets. In order to have strong bones and teeth, fight tooth decay and gum disease, we need vitamin D. To ensure our bodies are absorbing the vitamin D we are intaking, we must consume it with fat. Vitamin D rich foods should also be from natural and organic sources to ensure the animal’s body absorbed the nutrient properly as well. While sunlight is the best way to absorb vitamin D, there are many foods rich in the nutrient.
Vitamin K2 is also essential because it tells the calcium where to go in your body so that its benefit can be fully maximized. Vitamin K2 is also produced by gut bacteria in your large intestine. Most people are not getting enough of this vitamin in their diet. Vitamin K2 is found in animal foods and fermented foods. You must eat the fat in the animal products in order to absorb this nutrient.
Below are the best dental superfoods that contain calcium, vitamin D and vitamin K2:
This includes butter, cheese and milk. The dairy must be from grass-fed cows in order to ensure that the nutrients were properly absorbed in the animal.
Salmon & Fatty Fish
Fish must be naturally raised from the ocean since farmed fish don’t receive natural food sources.
Meats from animal organs are rich sources of fat-soluble vitamins A, D, and K2, as well as many other nutrients not found in other foods.
Look for eggs from grass-raised chickens to ensure the eggs contain vitamin D3.
Fermented foods such as sauerkraut, miso, kefir and kimchee are superfoods for the body. The healthy bacteria in these foods have many positive impacts on the gut, which ultimately impacts dental health.
The Dental Diet
To learn more about the impact of these vitamins and nutrients on your body and ultimately dental health, Dr. Steven Lin describes the impact of nutrition principles on dental disease. His popular book The Dental Diet describe the link between our modern day diet being low in these key nutrients, and orthodontics along with a variety of other dental issues. Learn more about Dr. Steven Lin and The Dental Diethere.
Part of maintaining healthy teeth and gums is to schedule routine dental exams and cleanings. To learn more about the health of your teeth, or to schedule an appointment, contact us at 5Points Advanced Dentistry at (614) 344-9147.
We’ve been taught all of our lives that dental care is important. Just as our eyes are the windows to our souls, the mouth has been compared to the window of our health. The condition that your teeth are in can actually tell you a lot about the condition of your body.
However, many of us don’t know exactly how brushing and flossing every day affects our bodies outside of the appearance and cleanliness of our mouths. Believe it or not, dental care impacts your entire body in a lot of beneficial ways. By brushing and flossing your teeth regularly, along with limiting sugar as part of a healthy, whole foods diet, you can prevent tooth decay and even disease throughout your body.
How Does Dental Care Affect My Brain?
When you have poor dental hygiene, it leaves your entire body susceptible to disease, many of which are otherwise preventable. Because your mouth has such a rich blood supply, an overgrowth of bacteria in your mouth can make its way into the bloodstream. Although not proven as a cause, this has been linked to Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia later in life. One of the biggest causes of dental-related dementia is gingivitis. Gingivitis is a type of gum disease that is caused by poor dental hygiene and leads to gum inflammation. This, if left untreated, can expose you to even more risks outside of dementia, such as tooth decay and sepsis – a blood infection.
How Does Dental Care Affect My Heart?
On the other hand, if the bacteria within your bloodstream decides to head south, it leaves you at risk for an abundance of other problems. Heart disease is one of the main concerns. Bacteria within the bloodstream can act like plaque, and if it builds up enough without intervention, it can lead to a heart attack. Scientists have found a direct correlation between poor dental hygiene and cardiovascular disease, a leading cause of death.
How Does Dental Care Affect My Lungs?
If the bacteria doesn’t manage to enter your bloodstream through your mouth, while eating or simply breathing, it can be inhaled into your lungs. Your lungs are one of the few places, like your bloodstream and bladder, that should be sterile, or free of bacteria at all times. However, by having an excessive amount of bacteria in your mouth due to poor dental hygiene, you risk exposing your lungs to it.. Once this bacteria has entered your lungs, it can leave you at risk of a variety of life-threatening respiratory infections such as pneumonia and bronchitis. This is one of many reasons why breathing through your nose is so important.
And, due to the fact that your lungs supply oxygen to your blood, once the bacteria is in your lungs, you also risk exposing your blood to it. This can then threaten your entire body, including your brain, heart, and even the reproductive tract.
How Does Dental Care Affect the Rest of My Body?
Poor dental care can affect your reproductive system as well, especially in men. It has been proven that men with periodontal disease are more prone to developing a condition called prostatitis, an infection of the prostate. With this condition, your prostate becomes severely inflamed and irritated, leading to painful and urgent irritation and even pain in the perineum.
Increased oral bacteria (along with undiagnosed sleep apnea)can also increase your chances of developing erectile dysfunction. Bacteria can enter the bloodstream and, like with your heart, clog up the arteries and veins. This can lead to inflammation that blocks blood flow.
In women, poor dental hygiene has even been linked to pregnancy and birth complications. Periodontitis, an infection of the gums that can cause deterioration of the jawbone, has been shown to increase your chances of having a premature birth or a baby with low birth weight.
While periodontitis, which affects an estimated three million people each year, is very common, it is also preventable so long as you take the time to practice proper dental hygiene by brushing and flossing every single day. Since there is a genetic component to periodontitis, it is very important to see your dental team regularly to be sure that it does not develop, and if it does, to treat it right away. The good news is that if you are diagnosed with periodontal disease, it is often very manageable with proper care.
How Can I Improve My Overall Health?
One of the best places to start with improving your health and wellness is with your mouth. As seen above, by practicing good dental hygiene, you can prevent a variety of diseases throughout your body. It can also reduce your risk of tooth decay and needed dentures or dental implants in the future.
Make sure to brush, floss, and use mouthwash at least twice a day. You can also try adding beneficial foods into your diet and even chewing sugar-free gum throughout the day to add an extra cleaning time. Most of all, make sure to visit your dentist at least twice a year for a checkup. Contact our practice today or give us a call at (614) 344-9147 to set up an appointment and start your journey to a healthy smile and body.
Dental care is one of the most important parts of your general health and wellbeing. The condition of your teeth can say a lot about your health, which is why it is so important that you brush, floss, and see a dentist regularly. However, even if you do follow these steps, you may find that your teeth still aren’t up to par. While it is possible that an underlying condition is causing your dental problems, more often than not, it’s because of simple mistakes that nearly everyone makes.
Most of the common mistakes dental patients make are, thankfully, easy to fix with just a few lifestyle changes. The top three most common mistakes are incorrect flossing, a lack of regular check-ups, and even smoking during the dental implant process.
Flossing is one of those parts of dental care that almost everybody forgets, even though it is so important. Every dentist recommends flossing due to its abundance of benefits.
Why Should I Floss?
It’s easy to think that just brushing and using mouth wash is enough to keep your mouth clean, but flossing does more than just make your teeth shine and prevent bad breath. Regular flossing removes plaque and prevents tartar build up. In doing so, you reduce your risk for periodontal – or gum – disease, and it’s even theorized that it can reduce your risk of heart disease.
How Do I Floss Correctly?
Flossing incorrectly most definitely earned its place as one of the most common dental mistakes. While you should floss at least once a day, most people who do follow this rule don’t know how to floss correctly.
First, cut a large piece of floss, around 18 inches, and wrap each end around your middle finger. Next, hold it between your forefingers and thumb tightly; this is what you will use to floss. Guide the floss between your teeth and, using a C-shape, rub. Repeat for every tooth.
The most important thing to remember is to be gentle. While bleeding is common, especially in people who don’t floss regularly, you shouldn’t injure yourself.
Much like with any other doctor, it’s important to visit the dentist regularly. Your teeth may look okay, but only a trained professional will know what to look for when it comes to dental health and disease.
Why Should I Have Regular Check-Ups?
Regular check-ups will help keep your mouth and teeth healthy. Not only does this give you the opportunity for a regular cleaning that will help reduce plaque and tartar build-up, but it will allow your dentist to stay updated on your dental health and to catch any issues before they become complications that are costly and risky to fix. Regular check-ups can improve your overall dental health, which, like with flossing, will improve your general health and lower your risk of disease in the future.
How Often Should I Have a Check-Up?
While it varies for each person, and your dentist may require more appointments during the year if you have specific issues, the average person should visit the dentist for a check-up and cleaning at least twice a year – every six months.
If you happen to miss an appointment, then you may find that your dentist will have to do more work in order to catch up. This can include extra X-rays, more appointments, and even dental procedures to teeth that have decayed or been damaged since your last visit.
What Should I Expect?
During a general check-up, your dentist may renew X-rays, perform a cleaning, and, if needed, schedule you for more procedures such as fillings, root canals, and even dental implants.
Dental Procedures Aftercare
After dental procedures, it is important to follow the instructions for aftercare carefully to prevent any complications. You can contact our practice to learn more about our dental procedures.
What Should I Avoid After Dental Procedures?
The main thing to remember after any dental procedure is to avoid disturbing the wound. This includes everything from rinsing your mouth to spitting and even to smoking.
Why Should Smoking be Avoided?
Smoking during the healing process of dental implants is one of the biggest mistakes that patients make. Often times, though, it can be hard for a patient to avoid smoking. Smoking during the healing process can cause an abundance of complications, including an increased failure rate.
How Long Should I Wait to Resume Smoking?
The longer you can wait the better, but to allow enough time for the implants to settle – a process known as osseointegration – you should wait at least two to three months. You should also try to stop smoking at least a week before your procedure.
Contact us at 5 Points Advanced Dentistry today at 614-344-9147 to schedule your routine check-up, or if you have any questions or concerns about proper dental care.