How Your Diet Impacts Your Teeth
When it comes to your dental health routine, you probably know that you should brush, floss and visit your Woden dental practice regularly. However, there’s something else that plays a big part in your dental health and the chance of you getting cavities – your diet. Get it right and not only will you be healthier in general but your teeth will be stronger for longer.
How Our Diets Have Changed
Our diets have changed immeasurably compared to what they once were. Thousands of years ago, when we all lived in caves, we were natural hunter-gatherers. Our diets consisted of meat, fish, fruit, vegetables, nuts, and seeds. We had a varied diet and we had to engage our jaws to consume it. While you might think that ancient people would have had terrible teeth, that was far from the case. Native tribes actually often had straight, disease-free teeth.
Today, we have a much more sugary, starchy, processed diet. We hunt and gather from supermarkets rather than from the wild, and it has taken its toll on our health. We’re missing key nutrients that help to move calcium through the body, strengthen teeth and bones and prevent decay. What’s more, we don’t have to work hard on chewing. Our diets are soft rather than full of many different textures and plaque is left to build up.
The Important Role of Saliva
Saliva is a clear liquid that is made by glands in the mouth and it’s incredibly important to our health. While it’s mainly made of water, it also contains important substances that help with digestion and strengthen teeth. The fact is that saliva performs several roles:
- Keeps your mouth moist.
- Helps you chew, taste and swallow.
- Fights germs and prevents bad breath.
- Contains proteins and minerals that protect tooth enamel.
Brushing your teeth does very little to change the volume or quality of saliva that you produce. However, diet has a significant impact. The reason for this is that saliva is made when you chew and is relative to how hard you chew. By consuming nutrient-dense, natural foods that need to be chewed, you can promote healthy saliva production and protect your teeth throughout the day.
The Importance of Brushing Your Teeth Twice a Day
However good your diet is, the chances are that you won’t eat like a caveman. To help fill in the gaps, and avoid gaps from appearing, brushing your teeth is vital. By brushing your teeth twice a day, you will disorganise the bacteria on the surface of your teeth. This makes it less likely to build up, eat away at the tooth structure and develop into tooth decay. However, while brushing makes a difference at the time, the food you eat will still affect your dental health in between.
What is General Care Dentistry?
General care dentistry involves routine checkups and simple procedures, including those pesky fillings that so many of us have had. However, it’s also a chance for you to discuss your oral health routine with your Woden dentist. By ensuring you are doing the right things, including having a healthy, balanced diet, you can avoid unnecessary dental costs down the road, not to mention the inconvenience and discomfort that can come with urgent dental care.
Diet as Part of Your Oral Hygiene Routine
Cavities are one of the most preventable chronic diseases in the world, but only if you take everything into consideration. Brushing your teeth twice a day and visiting your dental practice regularly is fundamental, but so is your diet. Consider what you’re feeding your body. If you want to stay strong, ensuring you get the right balance of minerals and nutrients is vital. What’s more, don’t be afraid to give your mouth a workout. While chewing will cause wear and tear over time, avoiding it will do far more harm than good.