Two of the most common dental problems are tooth decay and bleeding gums, a symptom of gum disease. Poor oral hygiene increases the risk of these diseases, but did you realise vitamin D also makes a difference?
Tooth Decay and Vitamin D
Vitamin D is essential for strong and healthy bones and teeth and facilitates the absorption of calcium from your digestive system. Calcium, along with phosphorus, creates tooth enamel, the hard outer covering of your teeth. Just underneath the enamel is a structure called dentine and which can be easily eroded by the bacteria that cause tooth decay. When you receive enough vitamin D, your immune system can protect dentine more effectively.
Gum Disease and Vitamin D
Gum disease is a condition where your gums bleed more easily. It is an inflammatory disease, meaning it can affect your entire body including your gut microbiome. A healthy gut microbiome is essential for a strong immune system. Vitamin D helps to manage the immune system, and it controls which immune cells are formed.
The easiest way to get vitamin D is to make sure you spend at least 15 minutes in natural sunlight, keeping your face and arms exposed. Foods that contain vitamin D include organ meats, fatty fish, eggs, and yoghurt, cheese and butter. Otherwise, ask your doctor about vitamin D supplements.