A healthy diet not only affects your general physical health, but also your dental health. We’re not referring only to your teeth, but your gums as well.
Proper nutrition results in improved immunity of your gum tissues. Healthy gums have a better chance at combatting bacteria and preventing infection and gum disease.
Fact: The rate and severity at which gum disease progresses are thought to be greater in an individual with poor nutrition than one with a proper diet.
The Frequency of Eating as a Contributing Factor
It is best to brush after each meal. This way, you remove the readily available carbohydrates that the bacteria in the mouth may convert into acids that will decay the teeth.
The more often you eat, the more potential acid attacks you may have which increases your chances of developing a cavity.
In addition, if you eat in the middle of the night, you are more likely to have an acid attack because there is a decrease in the salivary flow that would ‘normally’ wash away any food debris; remember, when we sleep, so do our salivary glands.
That is why it is especially important to brush and floss if you eat in the middle of the night. As you can see, the time that you eat is just as important as the frequency of your meals.
The Role of Saliva…Re-visited
Saliva plays an important role in removing debris, plaque and food particles from the teeth. But it also has a couple of other important functions:
- It contains bicarbonate which helps to neutralise acids in the mouth.
- It delivers minerals i.e. calcium, phosphate and fluoride to the surface of the tooth which promotes remineralisation.
In the next blog, we’ll take a look at some healthy food choices and how they can positively affect your dental health.
Yours in good dental health,
Dr. F. Keshavarz Dentistry