Will Your Nutritional Habits Lead to Periodontal Disease?
You may have heard, time and time again, that sugary foods, drinks, and non-nutritional snacks are bad for your teeth. Though you may not question this logic, it’s important to understand what role your diet plays in your oral health.
One of the many diseases that Dr. Okamoto works to treat is periodontitis, a common yet preventable disease characterized by bleeding gums and brought on by bacteria attacking the tooth enamel and soft tissue. Although many believe the primary cause of gum disease to be poor oral hygiene, evidence also shows a correlation between diet and the onset of periodontitis.
What Foods Are You Eating in Excess?
Research suggests that diets rich in carbohydrates lead to more cases of gum disease. That’s because the sugars contained in carbohydrates become sticky, adhering to tooth enamel and allowing bacteria to spread. Combine large amounts of carbohydrates with poor oral hygiene practices and the bacteria on your teeth start to impact your gums as well.
As you work to improve your oral health, be mindful of the foods you consume. Of course, even the healthiest of foods contain some sugar, but the added sugars in many processed foods are what will do your teeth and gums the most harm. Read ingredient labels, and if you must indulge in your favorite treat, make sure to brush and floss thoroughly afterward.
What Foods Aren’t You Eating Enough Of?
While you’re limiting the amount of sugar you eat, it's also essential that you take in certain nutrients, such as vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, which are good for your body overall and support a healthy diet. Without them, your immune system may weaken and allow certain infections to spread.
When your diet lacks particular nutrients, periodontal disease may have an easier time affecting your gums. For this reason, a balanced diet is important to maintain. Fruits, vegetables and dairy products contain vitamins and minerals that benefit your oral health if eaten regularly. Proteins are also important for the strength of your tooth enamel.
Preventing Periodontal Disease Starts With You!
With a balanced diet, good oral hygiene practices, and regular dental checkups, you can keep periodontal disease at bay. If you would like more information about periodontal disease, contact Dr. Okamoto to schedule an appointment.