HOw Good is Vitamin C for your teeth and Gums?

How Vitamin C Can Make a Difference

Keeping that healthy and beautiful smile will take more than simply eating whatever you want. While brushing and flossing your teeth regularly are certainly important, your diet also plays a very important part in keeping your teeth and gums healthy. Although not the only vitamin you need for good oral health, vitamin C is probably the most important one.

The Prevalence of Gum Disease

Just about half of the adults in the United States have the more serious form of gum disease called periodontal disease. While gingivitis is the milder form, periodontitis really is the same thing – just more advanced.

Periodontitis should be taken seriously because it can cause severe damage to your teeth, gums, and jawbone. Men are more likely to have it than women. It is caused by an infection in the gums, which starts when bacteria naturally found in the mouth are allowed into the gums because of poor care of your teeth.

The inflammation starts fighting the invading bacteria and then spreads as more bacteria enter the gums. The immune system starts attacking the gums, the support structures for your teeth, and even the jawbone. If not treated, it will lead to loose teeth and then your teeth will likely fall out. Periodontitis is the leading cause of tooth loss today.

The Role of Vitamin C

The most important structure in your gums and jawbone is a protein called collagen. It is the most common protein in your body and it provides structure to not only your gums and jawbone, but to most everything else, too, including your hair, muscles, blood vessels, ligaments, skin, nails, and more.

Vitamin C is essential for your body to be able to manufacture collagen. When you do not get enough vitamin C, your body actually begins to fall apart. It can no longer repair the damage or regenerate new tissue. Your current ligaments, muscles, and joints begin to shrink and lose their strength. Blood vessels that need to have collagen to keep strong become weak and break down. They may rupture, and your jaw bone and ligaments that support your teeth deteriorate.

All of the elements that support your teeth are strengthened and supported by vitamin C. The vitamin is also an anti-oxidant, which means it will likely help to reduce conditions that lead to tissue damage.

Low Levels of Vitamin C Promotes Gum Disease

It has long been known that there is a connection between a lack of a proper diet and gum disease. Not only do the gums and other tissues break down when gum disease is present, but vitamin C and other vitamins are essential to support the immune system in the gums.

Another Reason to Eat Healthy

The bacteria that cause periodontal disease gains access to all the organs of the body once it gets into the gums and inflammation begins. From the gums, it travels through the veins and arteries and the inflammation can cause buildups and blockages in those blood vessels and organs. This can lead to major diseases including cardiovascular disease, heart attacks, stroke, diabetes, dementia, several forms of cancer, and more.

Evidence of a lack of vitamin C can start appearing within 30 days. The gums can start pulling away from your teeth, and this enables the bacteria to enter the gums – and your bloodstream.

Vitamin C Is Needed Daily

While other vitamins may accumulate in your body, vitamin C does not. It is water soluble, which means your body disposes of the extra amount every day. This makes it necessary that you either eat natural fruits and vegetables that contain it or take a vitamin C supplement.

Smoking and Vitamin C

People who smoke are at a greater risk of periodontal disease. This is because smoking reduces the amount of vitamin C in the body, and especially in the oral cavity. Smokers need an extra amount of this vitamin to combat this loss, but they are still more susceptible to getting periodontal disease due to the harm it causes to the tissues in the mouth.

Foods to Eat for Natural Vitamin C

Vitamin C can be obtained from many different fruits and vegetables. In reality, the daily requirement to get the vitamin C benefits can be gained simply by eating a couple of fruits and vegetables each day. The recommendation is that you eat as many as seven to ten different ones each day, and more is needed if you have periodontal disease. Fruit, rather than fruit juice, should be consumed because the sugar in fruit juice will only promote the growth of the harmful bacteria in your mouth.

If you have dental problems, such as periodontitis, due to a lack of proper nutrition, you can get gum disease treatment in the Carrollton, TX, and Grapevine, TX areas, from Dr. Kumar T. Vadivel, DDS, FDS RCS, MS, a Board Certified Periodontist. Adding vitamin C and other healthy foods to your diet can help you enjoy better dental health for the long term. For a consultation or dental treatment for better dental health, you can contact his office today at (817) 756-8578.