Periodontal disease is most closely linked to poor oral hygiene, which results in plaque and tartar buildup. Commonly referred to as “gum disease,” people who suffer from this condition often don’t eat enough of the healthy foods that can minimize the sticky film of bacteria. As a dentist in Vero Beach FL people trust, we’d like to share a shortlist of foods that promote healthy teeth and gums.
Top Foods for Healthy Teeth
A beautiful smile brightens everyone’s day. Possessing healthy, white teeth gives people self-confidence largely because smiling gets a positive response from others. Those rank among the personal reasons to regularly brush, floss, and eat the following tooth-healthy foods.
- Sugar-Free Gum: If you enjoy a package of gum from time to time, there’s another reason to chew. As long as the gum is genuinely sugar free, chewing helps clear away the bacteria that might otherwise become plaque. Double your pleasure, as the slogan goes.
- Black and Green Tea: Whether caffeinated or not, teas deliver polyphenols known to interact with unhealthy oral bacteria. Polyphenols can help prevent bacteria from producing acids that negatively affect your teeth.
- Dairy Products: Foods such as milk, cheese, yogurt, and other dairy products, replenish many of the minerals lost while eating other foods. Dairy products also help the body rebuild the protective enamel of your teeth.
- Water: In all likelihood, you probably drink more fluids than you eat solid foods. That positions your fluid intake as a critical source of oral health. When you drink beverages laced with sugar and acids, your teeth take a beating. Water, by contrast, often includes fluoride that protects and promotes healthy teeth. The clear liquid also helps flush out unhealthy bacteria and maintains the body’s hydration balance.
- Nuts and Lean Proteins: Along with bushing away some plaque while chewing, proteins and calcium-rich foods provide the necessary nutrients to rebuild tissue. Foods such as almonds, walnuts, pistachios, tofu, chicken, and even a few eggs, are cornerstones of a healthy smile.
Top Foods for Healthy Gums
It’s essential to schedule and keep routine cleanings at your Vero Beach dental office. Only a trained hygienist can effectively remove the caked-on plaque that negatively impacts your gumline. As the National Institute of Health points out, if pockets between your teeth exceed 3 millimeters or they become red and swollen, you’ll likely require the services of a periodontist. These are foods that promote healthy gums.
- Fresh Fruits and Vegetables: Fruits and veggies are an excellent source of vitamins and minerals. Taking the daily recommended allowance of things like Vitamin C and beta-carotene boosts the immune system and helps ward off infection.
- Fatty Fish: Foods such as salmon have an abundance of Omega 3s. These “good fats” play an important role in reducing cholesterol, improving brain function, and are considered powerful anti-inflammatories. Organizations such as the Mayo Clinic support eating fatty fish such as salmon.
- Foods Rich in Probiotics: The healthy bacteria found in fermented foods such as yogurt, kefir, and sauerkraut help control the unhealthy bacteria that populate inside your mouth. This, in turn, helps deter gum disease.
- Shiitake Mushrooms: This type of mushroom contains Lentinan, a unique carbohydrate that goes by the scientific name “polysaccharide.” This element attacks a strain of bacteria that causes gum disease.
- Sweet Potatoes: Some people avoid potatoes because they are loaded with starch that can be difficult to burn off. On the other hand, sweet potatoes provide a potent dose of Vitamin A. This vitamin supports the health of your mucous membrane and soft gum tissues.
The importance of healthy gums cannot be understated. Periodontal disease can result in losing multiple teeth and requiring dental implants Vero Beach residents could otherwise avoid. Research also indicates gum disease has links to cognitive functions, heart conditions, and an increased risk of cancer.
Schedule An Appointment with Your Trusted Vero Beach Dental Office
Dr. Brown and his team of skilled hygienists are dedicated to educating Vero Beach community members about ways to prevent gum disease and tooth loss. We hope these nutritional suggestions prove useful for you and your loved ones. Please schedule an appointment with us, so we can address any dental issues you might have.