What does the health of your mouth have to do with your overall health? In a word, plenty. A look inside or a swab of saliva can tell your doctor volumes about what’s going on inside your body.
Some eating habits can wreak havoc on your body and your teeth. For example, snacking throughout the day can increase the risk of tooth decay. Sipping soda and frequent nibbling on snack foods increase the rate of harmful acid attacks on tooth enamel. And repeated binge eating- impulsive gorging or continuous eating- can do the same.
Limit snacks, particularly those high in simple sugars, and eat a balanced diet.
Every time you eat, particles of food become lodged in and around your teeth, providing fuel for bacteria. The more often you eat and the longer food stays in your mouth, the more time bacteria have to break down sugars and produce acids that begin the decay process.
Each time you eat food containing sugars or starches (complex sugars), your teeth are exposed to bacterial acids for 20 minutes or more. If you must snack, brush your teeth or chew sugarless gum afterward.
A balanced diet is also important. Deficiencies in minerals and vitamins can also affect your oral health, as well as your general health.
Commit to a daily oral-health routine
Based on discussions with your dentist or dental hygienist, come up with an effective oral-health routine that’s easy to follow and takes your situation into account. For example, if you are taking medication that dries your mouth, you may want to use fluoride every day.
Pregnant women, people with underlying health conditions, such as diabetes, and people in orthodontic treatment also may want or need special daily care.
Everyone can benefit from fluoride, not just children. Fluoride strengthens developing teeth in children and helps prevent decay in adults and children. Toothpastes and mouthwashes are good sources of fluoride. Your dentist can prescribe stronger concentrations of fluoride through gels or rinses if you need it.
Why is it Important to Eat Right?
A poor diet can lead to gum disease and tooth decay. Foods high in carbohydrates, sugars and starches greatly contribute to the production of plaque acids that attack tooth enamel. Eventually, these acids can cause tooth enamel to break down, forming a cavity.
If you must eat foods high in sugar or starch, try to eat them during meals rather than between meals, and avoid any foods that stick to your teeth as these can produce more plaque. Most meals already contain acid-producing ingredients, so the less you expose your teeth to these ingredients, the less plaque acids attack your tooth enamel. Also, saliva production rises during meals, helping rinse food from the mouth.
The human mouth is one of the main routes of entry of foreign microorganisms into the body. This is why orally transmitted diseases are widespread and common in human populations. Colostrum appears to also enhance saliva-mediated protection against dental diseases, as well as other orally transmitted infections. This has a far-reaching benefit to our health.
For example, heart disease is now known to be related to oral health. The bacterium Phorphyomonas gingivitis, responsible for gum disease, is now also known for its damaging effects in the linings of the arteries.
This was proven by the work of Dr. Raul Garcia of the Boston VA Outpatient Clinic. As part of the VA Normative Aging Study, some 1,100 men studied over a 25-year period. They were healthy at the start, but the men with the worst gums had twice the heart-attack rate of their peers with healthy gums and odorless breadth. Their stroke rate was three times as high. The bacterium has also been found at the “scene of the crime”- in diseased carotid arteries.
By taking care of your dental health with colostrum, you’re also taking care of many other aspects of your health. It can prevent infections, and maybe even diseases, throughout your body.