Tooth Care - How to support the health of your teeth and gums Naturally
Nutritional wisdom to support the health of your teeth and gums.
Your teeth are not designed to decay! They were designed to remain strong, resilient and cavity free for your entire life. Why would Nature plan for the failure and pain of disintegrating teeth? Without healthy teeth and gums, we cannot digest food properly and we eventually will not thrive.
Anatomy of a Tooth
|Cure tooth dacay - Anatomy of a tooth|
Dentin is the hard, bone-like middle layer of teeth. Enamel is the hard white surface covering your teeth. The root of the tooth is embedded in the jaw. The tooth pulp is in the middle of the tooth. The pulp contains blood vessels, nerves, and cellular elements including tooth building cells. Each tooth has a blood supply and a nerve that travels through the center of the tooth roots into the jaw bone via the mandibular nerve. The mandibular nerve is a branch of the largest cranial nerve in our body, the trigeminal nerve. This nerve connection is what makes toothaches so painful and debilitating. The periodontal ligament lines the root of the tooth. It connects the tooth to the jaw through millions of taut fibers running in different directions. These fibers absorb the shock of chewing, and hold the tooth firmly in place. The cells in the periodontal ligament can degenerate and regenerate. A worn out periodontal ligament is a primary cause of tooth loss.
Cavity - Mercury Filling and its effects
Amalgam dental fillings.Amalgam, or so-called ‘silver’, fillings contain mercury, the most toxic substance in the world and, as such, these tooth preparations have been associated with a range of chronic diseases - especially neurological and cognitive problems - from the time that they were first used more than 150 years ago.
These preparations are also suspected of being responsible for chronic degenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer’s and multiple sclerosis. Mercury from amalgam vapours binds to tissues and has been detected in the brain years after a filling has been fitted.
Why take the risk?
Mercury is the most toxic metal known to man. We have all probably already absorbed more mercury from our fillings than is safe. Even though some critics argue that our teeth are releasing levels of mercury that are far too low to affect our health, the truth is that there is no safe level when it comes to mercury.
This view is supported by the WHO, which maintains that there is no such thing as a ‘safe level’ for mercury, or a no-observed-effect level (NOEL), according to its Environmental Health Criteria 118 (see www.inchem.org/documents/ehc/ehc/ehc118.htm).
Although amalgam fillings have been in use for more than 150 years, no health agency has ever assessed their safety. Indeed, America’s FDA approved its use as part of its so-called ‘grandfather’ procedure, which grants automatic approval to drugs and devices that have been in continuous use since before 1976.
However, there are other compelling reasons for dental associations to deny that there are any health risks with the use of amalgam.
- Convenience. Amalgam is relatively inexpensive, it is durable and it is very easy to work with. Alternatives, such as composites and porcelain inlays, hit the pocket of the dentist harder, and they will last for only half the life of an amalgam filling, which can remain in the tooth for around 10 years. Using non-amalgam fillings will double the effort and expenses for the dentist.
- Capacity. Declaring amalgam fillings as unsafe would trigger the greatest health panic of all time, overwhelming dentistry everywhere around the world. Virtually everyone would want their amalgam fillings removed, and dentists would be unable to cope. According to the ADA, in 2009, more than 100 million Americans had amalgam fillings in their teeth.
- Lawsuits. It is imperative for dental associations to maintain their party line claiming the safety of amalgam fillings, as any admission that they are harmful would spark an investigation into the time they have ‘sat’ on the discovery, and could herald a spate of lawsuits, especially from people suffering from cognitive and neurological problems. Despite insisting that amalgam fillings are safe, the ADA has also declared that it “owes no legal duty of care to protect the public from allegedly dangerous products used by dentists”.
Dentistry's Inability to Cure CavitiesWhen you go to the dentist for a checkup he (or she) will use x-rays, a dental examiner, and visual inspection to see if there are any cavities present. When a cavity is found, the dentist gives you the bad news. As they are taught in dental school and legally required to do, dentists offer their patients a surgical treatment for the disease of dental caries in the form of removing the diseased part of the tooth by drilling and replacing it with a synthetic material.
Decaying teeth can be a scary and painful process. When in a state of fear and panic, we tend to disregard the most sensible decision we could make: to search for the real cause, rather than succumb to the easy and passive response of allowing a dentist to “fix” the problem for us. Yet when searching for the real cause of tooth decay, many people get lost in a maze of misleading information.
We have been taught, for the most part, that tooth decay is as inevitable as death and taxes, and that we have no choice in the matter. In this article you will learn how the power to cure cavities is in your hands.
The Real Cause of Cavities
Harvard Professor Earnest Hooton clearly and succinctly summarized the problem: “It is store food that has given us store teeth.”
Tooth decay in young children
A rare, but well-recognised, problem with some breastfed children is the appearance of dental caries in the primary teeth, often referred to as ‘nursing caries’. Although the cause is thought to be linked to extended breastfeeding, particularly night nursing, there is little research to verify this. Certainly, there is little in the breastfeeding literature to explain why some night-time nursers develop cavities while others do not.
The likely explanation is the difference in the vulnerability of individual children’s teeth and the environment in which they live.
Sometimes, if the mother has extensive dental work during pregnancy or while breastfeeding, it is possible that the bacteria that cause dental caries were passed from the mother to the infant when the first teeth erupted.
If the mother has a history of extensive tooth decay, she could easily be passing on these ‘bad’ bacteria by sharing spoons, cleaning pacifiers with her mouth or allowing her saliva to come into contact with her infant’s teeth in some other way (Pediatr Dent, 1994; 16: 110–6; Scand J Dent
Res, 1990; 98: 193–6).
The percentage of individuals carrying these very high-acid-producing bacteria is only 20 per cent, so it’s likely that at least 80 per cent of infants can and do sleep at the breast without developing tooth decay.
If your child does have high-acid-forming bacteria in the mouth, the best treatment is careful management of the oral flora. From a dentist’s point of view, this means careful attention to brushing even these primary teeth, particularly if you don’t wish to limit nighttime feeding. Once your child’s teeth erupt, you should try to brush or wipe them with a damp cloth after each feeding or at least three to four times a day.
Protective Tooth Care - How to prevent and cure tooth decay naturally
Given the risks of conventional dental procedures, prevention makes a lot of sense. There is a number of natural strategies that can help keep your teeth and gums healthy. Try each of these ‘treatments’ for at least two months before deciding if they work or not.
Eat whole, unprocessed foods. Several dietary factors have been implicated in tooth decay. Most of them - refined flours, inactivation of vitamins by processing and heating, and high sugar levels - are due to highly processed foods. In contrast, fresh foods contain many of the nutritional elements necessary to maintain good oral health.
Use an alcohol-free mouthwash, as alcohol dries the mouth, thereby allowing invasive bacteria to take hold. Mouthwashes containing folic acid (0.1 per cent) can combat bleeding gums, and 4 mg/day of folic acid in capsule or tablet form may also be effective (J Periodontol, 1976; 47: 667–8). Mouthwashes containing herbal extracts such as chamomile, Echinacea and myrrh may be particularly effective.
Avoid environmental toxins. Finnish researchers found that dioxin exposure via breastmilk and food can result in chalky lesions on the teeth and loss of enamel in children (Lancet, 1999; 353: 206–7). Lead is similarly damaging (Nat Med, 1997; 9: 1024–5).
Minimise your drug-taking regime, as drugs can affect your oral health. Antidepressants reduce saliva levels, which can lead to tooth decay in adults (Lancet, 1995; 346: 1640). Lowering the dose, chewing sugar-free gum or taking extra vitamin C can help. The birth-control pill can lead to an increased risk of gum disease by encouraging bacterial growth in the mouth (Contraception, 1998; 57: 381–4).
Consume green and black teas, which both contain flavonoids that inhibit the growth and activity of the bacteria associated with tooth decay (Arch Pharm Res, 1998; 21: 348–52). Tea also contains natural fluoride, which may be helpful.
If you must eat sweets, use sugar substitutes such as sorbitol and xylitol, which appear to have anticaries benefits (Am J Dent, 1996; 9: 184–
90). Of the two, xylitol-containing chewing gum appears to be more beneficial than sorbitol-containing gum, which can cause flatulence.
Replace your toothbrush regularly - at least every month. Worn toothbrush heads are less efficient at removing food and plaque, and can lead to tooth decay and gingivitis (gum inflammation).
Improve your tooth-brushing technique. Brush every day, ideally after each meal, using five to 10 strokes in all areas—downwards on the upper teeth, upwards on the bottom ones, and circular across the upper surfaces of the back teeth.
Basic fruit recommendations: Avoid or greatly limit highly sweet fruits like dates, peaches, pineapples, dried fruit, blueberries and bananas until you do not have tooth decay anymore.
Intermediate fruit recommendations: Only have fruit once around the middle of the day such as after lunch. The fruit you do eat should not be too sweet. Examples of less sweet fruits are: sour berries such as raspberries, as well as kiwi, and green apples.
Advanced fruit recommendations: If you have bad cavities or want to immediately stop the rapid process of tooth decay, avoid all sweets and fruits completely.
Supplement with a good-quality multivitamin/mineral. This will make up for any dietary deficiencies and provide useful amounts of nutrients, such as zinc and selenium, necessary to maintain a vigorous immune system that can help fight off dental bacteria.
A smile freshens up the face better than any make-up can do. A killer smile will make everyone look and stare. You do not have to have a perfect set of teeth but keeping your pearly whites clean and your breath smelling fresh will definitely be life changing.
Brushing your teeth twice a day is an essential dental care. This helps prevent tooth decay and gum disease. The size and shape of your toothbrush should fit the mouth to enable the brush to reach all areas easily. Using a toothpaste containing fluoride is also another tip in dental care for fluoride helps protect your teeth from decay. It is also a vital dental care if you clean between the teeth using floss or interdental cleaners which remove plaque from the in between areas the toothbrush can't reach. This also prevents gum disease.
You can use sweeteners in moderation when you do not have active tooth decay. If you have active tooth decay, and painful or sensitive teeth, then make every effort to temporarily avoid all added sweets. Our current policy at home is to only have sugar from fruit. Once or twice per month for a sweet dish we use unheated honey, grade B organic maple syrup.
Brushing the teeth is not as easy as you thought it is. You might not believe this but brushing the teeth is more than brushing the teeth, spitting out the water, and gargling. The following are tips in brushing that will definitely vamp your personal dental care.
• Brush at a 45 degree angle in short, half-tooth-wide strokes against the gumline
• In brushing chewing surfaces, hold the brush flat and brush back and forth
• Tilt brush vertically and use gentle up and down strokes with toe of brush in brushing inside surfaces of front teeth
• Brush the tongue in a back-to-front sweeping motion to remove food particles and freshen the mouth.
As mentioned earlier, flossing is a vital part in dental care and similar with brushing, there is a proper way in doing it. The following will teach you how to floss properly and get that great smile.
• Wrap an 18-inch strand around your middle fingers and hold a one inch section tightly.
• Ease floss between teeth and clean up and down several times while curving around the tooth at the gumline.
• Always floss behind the last tooth and unwind clean floss as your proceed.
• Floss around the abutment teeth of a bridge and under artificial teeth with a floss threader.
It has been said that a person should visit the dentist at least twice a year and that saying is not just a maxim passed from a parent to a child for the sake of passing but in fact is a type of dental care that we all should be responsive. Brushing and flossing will never be enough to keep your pearly whites unbelievably clean and your mouth smelling fresh. Visiting your dentist at least once in six months will ensure that killer smile you thought only existed in commercials.
When you go to the dentist, you get more than cleaning. If cleaning is all you can get from the dentist as dental care, your dentist might be getting more than your money's worth. When you visit the dentist, you actually get a full spectrum of dental care. The full spectrum includes diagnostic, preventive, and educational services specifically and individually designed to help you keep the best possible smile.
Teeth whitening naturallyDental care is more than brushing the teeth as you have learned as you read this article. Good oral hygiene is a habit we all should get into to keep that smile a killer that will make you attractive and not scary.
One of the latest dental habits to make waves has to do with teeth whitening. Understandably there are several means in which to achieve whiter and brighter teeth. Equally there are varying costs and also some minute risk factors connected with a few of the teeth whitening techniques.
If you are into attaining whiter teeth the natural way there are options you may not have even considered. Most of the natural whitening tips and techniques found to be effective take patience and time for results to appear. If you are patient and diligent there will be results.
When looking for natural teeth whitening products in the retail shops and health food stores you will find many varieties. Toothpaste with teeth whitening properties included in the ingredients or advertisement will be beneficial to your efforts for a whiter brighter smile. Some natural efforts for whiter teeth may take longer to achieve than the chemically based whiteners but the results will still be noticeable.
There are several common natural whiteners present in the natural teeth whiteners. These change over the course of years as newer more effective methods present themselves through research. Bamboo powder, calcium carbonate and silica are some of the ingredients you may find today in the natural teeth whitening products. Silica cleans and whitens teeth. Stains are removed with silica and there is no harsh abrasion involved. Abrasion can damage enamel.
One of the obvious ways to reduce staining of the teeth and promote healthy gums is by drinking lots of water. Drinking a lot of water steers you away from drinking fluids that are darker and tend to stain or discolor teeth. Coffee, tea, and especially dark colored soda's are among the top drinks that leave stains on teeth. An occasional beverage that leads to staining is not a problem. Constant consumption of these types of drink is not conducive to teeth whitening.
Cigarette or cigar smoking is bad for your over all health and clearly causes damage to organs and tissue that you cannot see with the naked eye. Cigar and cigarette smoking is also another deterrent from naturally white teeth.