What is the best vitamin for teeth and gums, and how can ingesting the right vitamins and minerals help you maintain and strengthen your overall oral health while preventing adverse and unpleasant health outcomes including gum disease and tooth loss?
In this article, we are going to explore and discuss the most important vitamins and minerals you can take to support strong, healthy teeth and gums. By the same token, we will also be taking a frank look at the very real consequences of not getting the vitamins and minerals your teeth and gums need.
Without further ado, here we go.
These vitamins and minerals have the greatest impact on your oral health
If you are already very health-conscious, your body might already be getting all of the vitamins and minerals it needs through a balanced and healthy diet.
However, most of us are guilty of operating on the fly and of forgetting that our bodies are sophisticated and intricate organisms that require certain conditions and supplements in order to function optimally, not to mention last for as long as possible.
Vitamins and minerals are absolutely fundamental to optimal immune system function, as well as to maintaining healthy gums and teeth. The following is a rundown of the most important vitamins and minerals for oral health.
Vitamin C is one of the most important vitamins overall. While many animal species are able to produce their own vitamin c naturally, we humans need to consume foods or supplements containing vitamin C if we want to enjoy its many benefits.
Vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin, most commonly found in citrus fruits and vegetables, but it can also be obtained as a supplement to be taken with other foods. It plays all sorts of important roles in maintaining immune function and keeping the body healthy. Just a few of its most vital functions in the body include repairing connective tissues and developing cartilage, as well as producing enzymes and neurotransmitters. Vitamin. C also functions as an antioxidant, which again plays into having a high functioning immune system.
Vitamin C deficiency
A lack of vitamin C can lead to all softs of health problems, including scurvy, puss-filled wounds, bone abnormalities, tooth loss (as the gums eventually become so weakened that they can no longer hold the teeth), as well as enzymes that are unable to carry out their normal functions in the body. In the worst case scenario, vitamin c deficiency can even lead to an untimely death.
If you are not getting enough vitamin C, your dental health will soon begin to suffer, starting with painful and bleeding gums.
Vitamin C supplements and foods
As already mentioned, vitamin C is found in citrus fruits and vegetables. The best natural food sources of vitamin c include oranges, kiwis, lemons and grapefruits, as well as strawberries, tomatoes, bell peppers, white potatoes and cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli and Brussels sprouts.
Vitamin D is another vital component in maintaining oral and overall health. Vitamin D is responsible for regulating the body’s ability to absorb calcium, phosphorus and many other minerals that also happen to be vital to oral health.
Vitamin D is in charge of building and maintaining healthy bones, and healthy teeth enamel.
Vitamin D deficiency
A lack of vitamin D is particularly detrimental to dental health. In children, a lack of vitamin D in the diet can adversely affect the normal development of both bones and teeth, which can lead to a weakened skeleton as well as to teeth that are more prone to cavities and chipping later on.
Vitamin D deficiencies can develop into serious dental health conditions, including gingivitis, a relatively mild form of gum disease which most often manifests as irritated, red and inflamed gums, and periodontal disease, a much more serious form of gum disease which can cause the gums and even the bone supporting them to become inflamed and infected.
Vitamin D supplements and foods
There are many different forms of vitamin D, some which are derived from animals and others which are derived from plants. If you are vegan or vegetarian, you should be paying particular attention to getting enough Vitamin D in your diet or as a supplement, since you won’t be getting it from fatty fish, red meat or other animal sources.
Vitamin D is found in numerous animal byproducts, including red met, egg yolks, liver and oily fish, such as sardines and mackerel. Vitamin D can also come from non-animal sources which include vitamin fortified cereals, mushrooms and oranges.
Calcium is a mineral which, much like vitamin D, is responsible for maintaining healthy teeth and bones, as well as vital skin and nails.
Calcium plays many other important roles in the body, too, ranging from regulating the heartbeat to regulating mood and energy levels.
Calcium deficiencies can lead to numerous bad health outcomes, including but not limited to osteoporosis, muscle crams and low blood pressure. A lack of calcium can even cause low moods!
In terms of dental health, calcium intake is super important, as a lack of calcium causes all bones in the body to become less dense, and this includes the teeth, which will become weaker and more susceptible to both chipping and cavities. It follows that when your teeth are more fragile, you are much more likely to damage or lose them altogether.
Calcium supplements and foods
Calcium is found in most dairy products, including cheese, yoghurt and milk from both cows, goats and sheep – and fortunately for the vegans among us, calcium is also found in most vegan dairy substitute such as for example calcium fortified almond milk and calcium fortified soya yoghurt.
Other sources of calcium include calcium fortified orange juice, Brazil nuts, almonds and edamame beans.
Phosphorus helps the body store and use energy correctly. This mineral is primarily found in the bones and the teeth, but smaller amounts are also found in the body’s cells and tissues.
Much like vitamin D, phosphorus both forms and helps maintain strong bones and teeth.
Insufficient phosphorus is a bad idea a for both children and adults.
In children, phosphorus deficiency is detrimental to norma, healthy bone growth and teeth development. In adults, a lack of phosphorus can have wide-reaching consequences, which may include low energy, joint pain, and not least tooth decay and jaw pain.
Phosphorus supplements and foods
Fortunately, phosphorous is a relatively easy mineral to come by – it exists in a great variety of food sources, including dairy products and meats, nuts, grains and beans and seeds.
Some of of the best sources of phosphorus are kidney, soy and pinto beans, bran and wheat germ, chicken and beef, almonds, cashews and peanut butter.
Vitamins for teeth and gums FAQ
Can vitamins help gum disease?
Taking the right vitamins, whether in supplement form or through your diet can have a tremendous impact on your oral health. Getting the vitamins your body needs can both help prevent negative outcomes such as gum disease and tooth loss, it can also help halt early stage gum disease before it develops further.
What vitamin helps keep teeth and gums healthy?
The simple reason for this is that vitamin C supports the whole immune system to function optimally – this includes the health and vitality of your gums and teeth.
Other important vitamins and minerals for teeth include vitamin D, as well as calcium, zinc and phosphorus. Deficiencies in these essential vitamins can all too easily lead to gum inflammation, gum disease, tooth decay and even tooth loss.
Is your body, including your gums and your teeth, already getting all of the vitamins and minerals it needs through your diet? Are you, at the very least, getting these vital vitamins and minerals through dietary supplements or vitamins?
If not, then you should start changing your habits as soon as possible. The repercussions of not doing so are simply not worth risking – as discussed in this article, vitamin and mineral deficiencies impact your health, your wellbeing and your body on every level.
Fortunately, there are so many things you can do to take care of your oral health – in addition to brushing and flossing on a daily basis, of course. Making sure your body gets the sustenance it needs to be able to maintain optimal immune system function, healthy gums and resilient tooth enamel, is one of the most important but also one of the easiest ways of taking good care of yourself.
Eating a good diet, one that contains plenty of fresh, healthy and natural foods such as oily fish, leafy greens and whole grains, is always preferable to taking supplements, but as long as your body gets adequate amounts of everything it needs, you will be able to maintain as well as improve your current health, including your oral health.