The health of our teeth and gums often reflect the health of our entire body. Having a good oral hygiene routine and daily flossing is one of the best ways you can keep your teeth healthy. However, this is just the start. Oral health begins with proper nutrition and diet. Here are a few tips to follow to keep your teeth and your body healthy:
Snacking on carbs during the day provides the bacteria in our mouths with a consistent supply of food. When you feed the bacteria, it will produce more acid and weaken tooth enamel. It is good to give our digestive systems time to break and rejuvenate. If you need to snack, eat something carb-free or rinse your mouth with water after eating, which will help dilute the sugar and allow the saliva to create a buffer for the acids.
Eat Mineral-Rich Foods
Teeth are porous, and they can gain or lose beneficial minerals. The key is to ensure they are receiving more minerals than they lose. This process is called remineralization. Brushing and flossing teeth helps to remove plaque; however, it does not aid nor inhibit remineralization. To keep teeth healthy, you will need to eat a diet rich in minerals.
Mineral-rich foods: (chose organic sources where possible)
- Homemade bone broth
- Grass-fed meats and poultry
- Dark leafy greens
- Cheese (soft cheeses)
- Himalayan salt
Remove refined sugar from your diet
Sugar is the primary food source for bacteria in the mouth. It produces harmful acid on our teeth and health problems, including diabetes, heart disease, and cancer. By reducing your diet’s sugar, you will significantly reduce bacteria and protect your teeth from the damaging acid that bacteria produce.
Clean your tongue
Keeping your tongue clean by brushing it well during your oral hygiene routine is a great way to reduce bacteria. Additionally, you may notice your breath is fresher and an overall cleaner feeling in your mouth.
Improve digestion for absorption
If your gut health is out of whack, it can hinder the absorption of minerals and nutrients. You may be eating the right foods, but your teeth’ remineralization can not occur if they are not adequately absorbed. Stress, certain medications, alcohol, parasites, and processed foods can negatively affect this absorption. Try eating more healthy fats with each meal, which can help increase absorption of vitamins A, D, E, and K. You can also take a probiotic supplement or eat probiotic-rich foods like kimchi, yogurt, pickles, or kombucha.
Drinking water helps to flush away food debris and bacteria from teeth and gums. As well, it helps to dilute harmful acid caused by bacteria in the mouth. Dry mouth likewise can put your teeth at risk of tooth decay. Drinking water helps to promote saliva production, which keeps teeth healthy by washing them with beneficial minerals.
Treat stomach issues
Severe heartburn and reflux can bring acid to your mouth, damaging tooth enamel. See your doctor and treat any gastrointestinal conditions.
Treat teeth grinding or clenching
Teeth grinding arises on a subconscious level where the teeth become clenched, or they grind together. The process can happen while sleeping or when you’re awake. Over time, it can wear down or fracture your tooth enamel. If you notice you regularly deal with jaw and facial pain, or worn-down teeth, call a dentist.
Schedule regular visits with the dentist
Seeing the dentist every six months helps to keep your teeth and gums strong. Your dentist can look for areas that need improvement and detect diseases early. The most important part is that they can remove tartar from teeth that brushing alone cannot handle. Is it time for your 6-monthly check-up and clean? Give Foothill Dental Care in Livermore a call today!