The Mouth-Body Connection: Nutrition and Oral Health | Kirkland Premier Dentistry
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The Mouth-Body Connection: Nutrition and Oral Health

April 8, 2023


It is known that there is a strong relationship between nutrition and oral health. Our oral cavity is as important as any other part of our body. This is why good or bad nutrition directly reflects on our oral health. Interestingly, good nutrition and oral health are interrelated in a way that both affect each other. If you make the wrong food choices, they are going to negatively affect your oral health and overall health. 

Nutrition And Oral Health: The Connection 

If you do not take care of your diet, the chances of having oral problems increase drastically. If you ensure good nutrition, you encourage the development of a healthy and flourishing microbiome. Most interestingly, if you have enough good bacteria in your mouth, your teeth and gums will be better at resisting oral issues like cavities and tooth erosion. 

You have to start with the basic fact that what we eat affects our health in some way or the other. Oral health is a part of your physical health and can cause or prevent many general health problems based on our approach. If you follow a good lifestyle and take care of your teeth, your general health and nutrition will improve drastically. 

How Wrong Foods Affect Your Teeth 

You should avoid eating foods with too much sugar, and carbohydrates because they are the most common contributors to dental decay and enamel erosion. Most studies show a clear connection between the intake of sugary and acidic foods and dental diseases and problems like erosion and cavities. 

Dr. Sheena Gaur at Kirkland Premier Dentistry stresses on the need to understand the difference between dental decay and erosion. She says that you will be able to understand how certain foods can ruin your oral health. Not only that, but you may think that erosion and decay are the same things, but they are totally different things.

Tooth decay is another term for cavities. Cavities occur when a layer of plaque deposits on the surface of your teeth and certain bacteria create acids that dissolve and damage your teeth. Frequent exposure to the plaque is caused due to improper cleaning techniques and eating sugary snacks throughout the day. 

Tooth erosion is also called demineralization. Erosion generally means the wearing down of something, mostly due to external factors. Dental erosion means the wearing away of the hard surface of the teeth due to regular exposure to foods and drinks which are acidic. This directly weakens the structure of your teeth and makes them prone to getting chipped or cracked. 

Sugar And Dental Decay 

Sugar is one of the worst enemies of your dental health. When we eat something, a film of bacteria builds on the surface of the teeth. This plaque is to be removed daily, otherwise, it keeps building up. When you eat sugary foods, this film of bacteria converts the sugar from the food into acids, which deteriorates and wears down the hard part of your tooth. This is the chief cause of tooth decay in modern society. 

This is why it is not recommended to keep snacking all day or have sugary drinks in excess. Excess sugar is not only harmful to your teeth but is also the cause of a plethora of general health problems like diabetes, heart disease, and obesity.

You may be thinking that you do not consume so much sugar in your food, but you should also take added sugars into consideration. Added sugars are the hidden enemy which negatively affects our oral health and general health. It would be a good idea to learn how to identify added sugars so that you can identify and eliminate them from your diet. 

Healthy Food Choices: What You Can Eat For Good Oral Health? 

You should include foods like Spinach and kale in your diet. Whole grains are great for your gut and overall health. If you can, you should include more legumes, beans, and peas in your diet. 

Fresh fruits and vegetables can improve your health and provide you with essential nutrients and much-needed natural sugars and fiber. Good quality natural cheese is good for you. 

If you chew sugar-free chewing gum for 20 minutes after a meal, your chances of developing cavities go down. Your enamel is also strengthened and you get fresh breath. 

Some foods are specifically great for oral health because they provide essential vitamins and minerals and also increase the production of saliva in the mouth. Saliva flow is known to prevent tooth decay. 

 Healthy Drinks For Oral Health 

Water will come at the top because it dilutes the oral acids and also prevents excessive plaque build-up. You should also rinse your mouth with water after every meal. 

You can drink green tea because it is rich in antioxidants and may generally contribute to better health. You should drink milk because it is rich in calcium and contributes to healthy bones and teeth. Milk is considered to be a healthy drink when too much sugar has not been added to it. 

The Benefits Of Dental Health 

The benefits of good oral hygiene and health are not limited to your oral cavity. 

Dental health is a part of your oral health, and there are numerous benefits to having good dental health

  • Healthy gums and low risk of gum disease 
  • Reduces the risk of heart disease 
  • Avoid respiratory infections 
  • Reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes 
  • Reduce the risk of cancer 
  • Improve reproductive health 
  • Better weight management 
  • Safer pregnancy 

Practicing good oral hygiene is the most important factor which contributes to your dental health. 

If you have any questions about improving your oral health and avoiding common dental problems, you should reach out to us at Kirkland Premier Dentistry

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