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Ask the Sarasota Dentist – What About Vitamins, Supplements, And Dental Care

Studies show that those who eat a balanced and healthy diet have better dental health and overall health. The more foods are cooked and processed the more they lose their vibrant organic value. So generally speaking those who eat fresh foods and avoid processed, frozen, canned, and junk foods will get more natural vitamins just by eating right. Dental health thrives on a diet with plenty of green vegetables, fresh fruits, and whole grains, and eating as much organic food as possible helps to ensure that we get higher levels of vitamins and other important nutritional ingredients.

But since it is not always easy to monitor everything in our diet and eat only the best kinds of foods, many people take vitamins, minerals, and dietary supplements in order to be sure that they get their daily recommended allowance of these valuable components of a healthy diet. Doing so can lead to better oral health.

Vitamin C, for example, is thought to promote healthy gums, and that can reduce periodontal bleeding, infections below the gum line, swelling and inflammation, and other gum problems. Meanwhile niacin, riboflavin, and thiamine also contribute to good oral health and hygiene, and research validates that high levels of antioxidants such as vitamin C, vitamin E, and beta carotene reduce inflammation while helping fight bacterial infection.

Dental health is intimately linked to the rest of our health. So that means that doing something as easy and routine as brushing regularly, flossing every day, and taking appropriate vitamins and minerals as supplements to a good balanced diet can even prevent such things as heart disease.

With poor oral hygiene, on the other hand, infections develop easily in the mouth. The teeth become weaker and are more susceptible to decay and rotting. The gums or periodontal get swollen and colonized by bacteria that can cause pain, bleeding, and loosened teeth. Once infections start in the mouth – especially when they penetrate into the pulp of the tooth or below the gum line – they can quickly move into the bloodstream. From there disease spreads to other parts of the body, and that can mean that an infection that began as a simple dental problem can grow into a serious complication in other organs.

Before spending money on various supplements to promote oral health, though, first consult your doctor or dentist to find out exactly what is right for your particular needs. Depending upon the kind of diet you already follow and the kinds of vitamins and minerals that are in the food you routinely eat, the doctor or dentist can evaluate what supplements are best. If you have less calcium in your diet, for example, because you don’t generally drink milk or eat other dairy products – perhaps because of an allergy or lactose intolerance – then it may be important for you to take a calcium supplement.

But some types of calcium are easily processed by the body. For instance, calcium blended with magnesium is often more easily assimilated. But too much magnesium can cause digestive problems. So that simply demonstrates one of the many examples of why it helps to get professional guidance and how your dentist can help to pinpoint the most advantageous vitamins, minerals, or other nutritional supplements for you.

Timothy G. Herring, DMD is a Fellow of the Academy of General Dentistry. The core of Dr. Herring’s practice philosophy isrestoring teeth to last a lifetimewhile maintaining the correct occlusion. Teeth, bone, gums, muscles, and joints must function in harmony. Visit his web site at http://sarasotafloridadentist.com