Nutritional Information for your Oral Health

Our office is dedicated to helping you keep your teeth for life! Your daily diet routine can help protect not only your body but your oral health as well.

Two  infectious  oral  diseases  that  are  directly  influenced  by  diet  and  nutrition  include  periodontal  or  gum  disease and tooth decay or cavities.

  • Nutrient  deficiencies  such  as  vitamin  C  and  magnesium  can  affect  your  body’s  response  to  the  inflammation  and  infection caused by gum disease.  A well balanced diet will ensure your body can properly fight the disease that 80% of the U.S. population suffers from, periodontal disease which causes you to lose teeth.
  • There are a combination of factors are involved in cavity formation, including cavity forming bacteria, tooth structure,  food  selection,  the  time  the  teeth  are  exposed  to  an  acidic  environment    and  the  amount  of  saliva  in  the  mouth.  A few tips below will help you protect your teeth from tooth decay.

There is an easy way to drastically reduce the likelihood of developing cavities. We’ll tell you how!

  • After you eat any meal or snack there is a period of time when your teeth are being broken down by naturally occurring acids in food.  This destructive time period typically lasts for two hours
  • However, simply chewing a piece of gum with xylitol cuts the destructive time down to only 20 minutes
  • It works because the chewing gum stimulates saliva, neutralizing acids and rinses away excess sugar residue
  • By chewing one piece of sugar-free gum, especially gum  with  xylitol,  you  can  drastically  shorten  the  time  period  in  which  the  teeth  are  being  broken  down—it’s  easy! Examples of gum with Xylitol: Orbit & Trident

Eating habits that may help prevent cavities:

  • Firm,  fibrous  foods  such  as  raw  fruits  and  vegetables;  chewing  gum;  sour  foods  and  citrus  fruits  stimulate  salivary flow.  An increase in the flow rate has a positive impact on resistance of teeth to cavities.
  • Protein may contribute to buffering effects of saliva. If you consume foods with fat and protein following a carbohydrate, like breads or crackers, it may shorten the period of time the teeth are being broken down. Examples: cheeses, nuts, cocoa products, yogurt & fats (butter/oils).  Milk has physical properties like saliva, so an increase consumption of low-fat milk may offer protection against cavities.
  • Eat/drink products such as coffee w/ sugar or carbohydrates over shorter period of time to reduce the amount of time the teeth are exposed to an acidic environment. This allows the teeth the opportunity to remineralize or become strong again.

Eating a variety of foods in moderation ensure adequate nutrient intake and the development of healthy eating habits. These are  key  factors  in  growth,  development  and  maintenance  of  the  teeth;  prevention  of  dental  caries,  periodontal  disease  and  general good health. Our Registered Dental Hygienists are here to answer any question you may have on how your diet can improve your oral health and promote whole body wellness.