Everything you need to know about dental health
Date Posted:4 March 2017
Maintaining good oral health is not just about aesthetics and white teeth. Poor oral health can affect your digestive system and even your immunity. As always, prevention is best. Below are the key points in preventing disease and tooth decay.
The mouth is the start of the digestive system. This is where the first digestive enzymes are produced during the process of chewing and production of saliva. Chewing not only exercises the jaw muscle, which plays a role in the development of facial structure, but is also the first step in breaking down food into pieces that are small enough to be digested properly in the stomach. When food is not broken down into small enough pieces, indigestion can occur and strain is put on the digestive system which can lead to bloating, wind and constipation as well as damage to the gut wall.
Poor digestion and leaky gut
If you haven’t heard of the term ‘leaky gut’, the name is literally a reflection of the condition. Contents of the gut (food particles and waste) slip through tiny gaps in the intestinal lining and circulate throughout the blood stream. The body see’s these particles as foreign, and initiates an immune response in order to fight them off. This immune response triggers an inflammatory cascade, impacting and lowering the body’s immune system. Periodontal gum disease is influenced by the immune system and its ability to fight the bacterial biofilm living in the mouth. Gum disease can cause a bacteria imbalance, as bacteria are transferred from the mouth to the gut. Eating foods that promote good digestion and beneficial bacteria will help improve overall health and oral health. See our earlier post about gut health Beauty from within
Excess and processed sugar
We all know this one. Too much sugar hanging around in the mouth will promote tooth decay, but it will also affect your gut microbiome and increase the amount of bad bacteria living in your mouth and your gut. Bacterial overgrowth is the cause of bad breath and can lead to thrush, which can occur both in the mouth and at the other end. Consuming organic kombucha and probiotic supplements will assist with good bacteria balance.
Drinking with a straw
If you are looking after your digestive system by drinking apple cider vinegar or lemon juice regularly, drinking through a straw will protect your tooth enamel from erosion. You can also use this practice if you are drinking a darkly pigmented juice such as grape or blueberry to reduce staining. Check out our range of eco friendly reusable straws.
We now know that fluoride is not as beneficial for teeth as once thought. It also accumulates in the body over time and can contribute to many ill health conditions. Choosing toothpaste which is fluoride free is the safest option for long-term health. Sassy Organics stocks only fluoride free toothpaste and mouth wash and they can be found here. To learn more about fluoride effects, see our earlier post What are the effects of using flouride containing toothpaste long term?
Over the counter whitening products lighten the teeth superficially and only remove the surface stains. Hydrogen peroxide is the active ingredient used in whitening and can cause tooth sensitivity by getting through the layer of enamel and irritating the nerve endings.
Natural teeth whitening methods
Coconut oil, being naturally antibacterial is great to use for oil pulling. This method has been used for many years by Indian cultures to promote good oral health and cleanse the body. By swishing coconut oil around the mouth for 20 minutes, plaque and bacteria are removed from the mouth, which can help to whitening teeth naturally and reduce gum disease. Learn more about Health benefits of oil pulling
Activated charcoal has been used for many years by the medical system as the antidote to drug over dose. In the digestive system, charcoal binds to substances including toxins and removes them from the system. The same result occurs when used in the mouth. As charcoal naturally binds and removes plaque and stains, teeth are left whiter and cleaner. As the charcoal does not erode the tooth enamel, there is no painful sensitivity as a result of whitening with charcoal.
Bentonite clay has similar properties properties as charcoal. It works at drawing out toxins and impurities and is often used as digestive cleansers as well as in facials masks and natural toothpastes.
My top pick for great oral health
Removing bacteria that lives on the tongue will help improve oral health and decrease bad breath associated with bacteria build up. Keeping your mouth free from bad bacteria will also help you keep your digestive system in balance.
Containing activated charcoal, bentonite clay and coconut oil, this natural toothpaste is the cream of the crop in removing plaque and bad bacteria to whiten teeth naturally and promote good oral health. Pure essential oils give the toothpaste a fresh and delicious taste, without the use of harmful chemicals.
3. Whole Bodies Certified Organic Mint Mouthwash
Mouthwash is perfect to use after meals to prevent plaque from sticking and causing damage and discolouration. Tackling plaque before it settles in is the best way to prevent stains.
Flossing every day ensures the hard to reach plaque is removed. It is important for ensuring fresh breath and healthy teeth and gums. Pearlbar's dental floss picks are all natural and do not contain petrochemical wax, like ones found in the supermarket.
This charcoal based tooth powder cleans, polishes, whitens, and detoxes your teeth without the use of chemicals. The calcium bentonite clay in this powder improves your dental hygiene and re-mineralizes your enamel.