Posted by LISA J BAKER, DDS on May 16 2023, 07:14 PM
Vitamin deficiencies can lead to several dental health concerns. These deficiencies are caused by a variety of factors, such as inadequate nutrition, digestive disorders, and certain medications.
Vitamin A promotes healthy teeth and gums. It’s responsible for forming tooth enamel, which protects teeth from decay. It also encourages saliva production, which keeps the mouth clean by flushing away harmful bacteria and food particles.
If you’re concerned about your risk of vitamin deficiencies, you should speak with your dentist to explore treatment options. They can recommend the right vitamins to take to protect your teeth and strengthen your gums.
The B vitamins are a group of eight different vitamins that are all water soluble. Each B vitamin has different functions, but they’re all important for your oral health.
One of the most important B vitamins is vitamin B3 or niacin. It helps your body produce energy, but it also helps protect against gum disease and fight inflammation in your mouth. A lack of niacin in your diet can lead to gum inflammation and mouth ulcers. Common sources of vitamin B3 include tuna, chicken, turkey, salmon, peanuts, sunflower seeds, avocados, lentils, sweet potatoes, mushrooms, spinach, eggs, and more.
Another essential B vitamin is vitamin B12. This vitamin helps keep your salivary glands healthy and boosts your immune system. Vitamin B12 supports nerve function and aids in the production of the protective covering of your teeth, known as the enamel. If you have low levels of this vitamin, it can lead to periodontal diseases and infections. Meat, fish, shellfish, dairy products, and eggs are rich in vitamin B12.
Other important B vitamins include biotin, B6, pantothenic acid, folate, thiamine, and riboflavin. Each of them helps improve your overall health while also giving a boost to your oral health.
Vitamin C is good for gum health because it promotes collagen production, which is how your gums repair damage like bleeding or receding gums. You can find vitamin C in citrus fruits, strawberries, dark leafy greens, cauliflower, pineapple, kiwi, and tomatoes. You can also take an oral supplement to help you get your daily dose.
Vitamin D can help strengthen the gums, making them more resistant to infection. The body can also better absorb calcium and phosphorus when the teeth have adequate vitamin D levels. Calcium and phosphorus are both essential minerals that help keep the teeth strong and healthy.
Vitamin E, or tocopherol, is an antioxidant that helps strengthen tooth enamel. It also protects gum tissue and may help prevent gum disease and oral cancers. You can get vitamin E from supplements or in foods like nuts, seeds, spinach, vegetable oils, and green leafy vegetables like kale, collard greens, turnip greens, mustard greens, and Swiss chard. Remember to eat a balanced diet with plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables in order to maintain overall health.
Dr. Lisa Baker and her caring team want their Bloomington area patients to enjoy beautiful, healthy smiles. For more information on dental procedures, call us for a consultation at (812) 269-8230.
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