When it comes to oral health and hygiene, there’s a universal understanding that it’s important to brush and floss twice daily to protect against cavities. But did you know that research has suggested that your oral health mirrors the health of your whole body? The mouth-body relationship can influence your heart and digestion, as well as your immune system, so the condition of your teeth could indicate the state of your overall health.
Oral Care Beyond the Brush
Proper care for your teeth and gums doesn’t just come from brushing and flossing twice a day; there are many essential vitamins and minerals that can help you keep your teeth, gums, and mouth healthy and clean. Let’s take a look at some of the most important ones you can supplement into your daily nutrition.
Universally known as vital to forming and maintaining healthy bones, calcium can also help strengthen your teeth and your jaw bone where your teeth are set. It is vital for people no matter what their age or gender to get the recommended daily amount of calcium to continue maintaining healthy bone density. Milk is the most well-known source of calcium, but collard greens, tofu, and supplements are also good non-dairy sources of calcium.
Vitamin D is just important as calcium for strong bones and teeth because it helps your body absorb calcium. Your body produces vitamin D when your skin cells are exposed to sunlight, but if you spend a lot of time indoors you may need to supplement additional vitamin D into your diet, both for you oral and overall health.
Vitamin C can help reduce inflammation and protect your teeth and gums. It is also crucial to supporting a healthy immune system and helps to form strong connective tissue as well as teeth and gum tissue. Vitamin C is also water soluble, so any excess gets flushed out of your body. It is recommended that people take vitamin C every day, but if you’re getting your vitamin C from fruit juices, limit yourself to 1 glass of juice per day because citric acid in fruit juices can actually wear down tooth enamel.
Water might be the most underrated liquid on the planet. This building block of life, however, also provides oral health benefits. Water helps keep the mouth hydrated by stimulating saliva flow, which cleans your mouth by neutralizing bacteria. It’s recommended that you drink 8 glasses of water a day.
A Few Minutes a Day
Oral hygiene is a lifelong task. But it is one of the easiest tasks you can do to support your well-being. Proper brushing and daily flossing, as well as regular dental checkups can ensure that you will enjoy a healthy smile throughout your life. But there are also foods you can eat between brushing to give your oral health the extra boost needed for a bright and healthier smile.