natural and home remedies to support dental health

Overall health and well-being is linked to the health of our teeth and mouth.

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Overall health and well-being is linked to the health of our teeth and mouth. The body’s natural defenses, along with good hygiene habits, are usually sufficient to keep mouth bacteria under control. When your immune system is compromised and/or your dental hygiene poor, it becomes easier for bacteria to enter your bloodstream.

WHAT ARE SOME DENTAL DISORDERS?

  • Cavities
  • Gingivitis
  • Halitosis
  • Impacted teeth
  • Maloclusion
  • Oral cancer
  • Periapical abscess
  • Plaque
  • Pulpitis
  • Tartar
  • Xerostomia (dry mouth)

PREVALENCE

The NCBI estimates nearly 75 percent of the adult population in the US is afflicted with periodontal diseases.

ALLOPATHIC TREATMENT

Treatment will vary depending on your particular condition. It is wise to make regular visits to your dentist for teeth cleaning and treatment of any cavities. The earlier you are treated, the better the outcome and the less pain you will have.

SELF TREATMENT

Prevention really is the best medicine. Adult teeth do not grow back.The substances and suggestions here are offered to you for further research.

DIET

A healthy immune system is always the first line of defense physical disorders. General health can affect your teeth just as tooth and gum problems can affect your general health. To promote a healthy immune system, it is important to eat a balanced diet, with as much variety as you can manage, with lots of whole, fresh vegetables and fruits, quality protein and healthy sources of monounsaturated fat. The Zone is an excellent starting point.

There are some foods considered to be particularly good for healthy gums and teeth.

FOODS THAT PROMOTE DENTAL HEALTH

  • Anthocyanin-containing foods
  • Antioxidant-rich foods
  • Arginine-containing foods
  • Bone broth
  • Calcium-rich foods
  • Celery
  • Foods that require chewing (crunchy, but not sticky foods) stimulate saliva. Saliva neutralizes bacteria.
  • Garlic
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Onions
  • Pears
  • Polyphenol-containing foods
  • Raw fruits and vegetables are good natural teeth cleaning agents
  • Shitake mushrooms
  • Strawberries are good natural teeth cleaners
  • Vitamin D-rich foods

FOODS AND OTHER SUBSTANCES TO AVOID

  • Acidic foods
  • Alcohol
  • Coffee
  • Energy drinks
  • Hard substances
  • Refined and processed foods of any kind
  • Smoking
  • Sticky foods
  • Sugar

TEAS AND OTHER LIQUIDS

There may be compounds in tea that fight bacteria in your mouth.

  • Black
  • Green

HERBS AND SPICES

  • Calendula leaves
  • Raw plantain to relieve swelling
  • Turmeric in water for a mouthwash
  • Turmeric paste for brushing (mix with oil)

ESSENTIAL OILS

Essential oils can be administered via a diffuser for inhalation, administered topically in a carrier oil like coconut, or undiluted drops can be added to a hot bath.

  • Clove oil for a gum massage
  • Peppermint oil for a massage
  • Oregano oil (for massage or diluted in water for a mouthwash)

OTHER SUBSTANCES AND SUPPLEMENTS

The cost of having a blood test to determine if you have nutritional deficiencies is likely to be negligible compared to over-consuming expensive supplements that you do not need.

  • Bio-Dent is said to provide synergistic ingredients to support cell function and a healthy skeletal system. Claims are that it supports continued bone remodeling as well as growth, development and repair of teeth. Standard Process sells the supplement.
  • Vitamins A & D are catalysts to mineral absorption and protein utilization.

HYDRATION

Water helps to keep saliva production normal and saliva is a great neutralizer for bacteria in your mouth. Drink water after eating to wash away food particles. Water is essential and a main nutrient for the human body. Without it, you cannot survive for many days. Staying hydrated is fundamental for a healthy body, so how much is enough? There are so many differences in people (i.e., how much we sweat), as well as the diets we consume (a lot of water comes from healthy, whole foods), but a general rule is to consume enough water that your urine is clear, but not so much that you dilute your nutrients. If you are taking certain supplements that make your urine yellow, then you can start out with the formula of drinking ½ ounce to 1 ounce of water for each pound you weigh. If you weigh 130 pounds, drink 65 to 130 ounces of water a day. Definitely drink when you are thirsty.

EXERCISE

That exercise is beneficial for overall health is undisputed. If you are ill, you will want to take it easy, of course, but there is always something you can do to support your body. Do what you can do without making yourself feel worse. Exercise in fresh air whenever possible.

EMOTIONAL SUPPORT

Stay calm. Anxiety undermines health. Practice relaxation exercises, talk to a friend. Do what works for you to keep mellow.  See the Stress post for relaxation tips.

OTHER THINGS YOU CAN DO

  • Apply raw papaya to the gums for several minutes and then rinse.
  • Chew garlic or rinse with garlic juice.
  • Cold packs on the cheek for relief from pain.  Apply for several minutes.
  • Diluted hydrogen peroxide solution as a mouthwash.
  • Don’t brush immediately after a meal but do rinse with water and then brush about half an hour later.
  • Gargle with warm salt water.
  • Give your mouth recovery time in between meals and snacks. Good biological things are going on in there during the “recovery” period.
  • Gum disease: brush at least twice daily and floss every evening. Use a water irrigator to stimulate blood flow. Hydrofloss is a good product, but there are other brands from which to choose. People with gum disease are more likely to have heart problems and stroke. Effects of gum disease are not isolated in your mouth.
  • Infections: Try edible earth.  If you have a dental tray for teeth whitening or a retainer, put some wet edible earth in it where it will surround the affected area.
  • Oil pulling
  • Olive oil on a cotton ball
  • Saturate gauze with a mixture of baking soda and salt (50-50) and place between the affected area and your cheek for a few hours.  You can also apply soda directly or rinse your mouth with soda and water.
  • Teeth problems are often related to bone and skeletal problems. Check out that possibility so you know exactly what you’re trying to treat.
  • To minimize the danger of some of the foods and drinks on this list (and remember some of them have health benefits as well) try to consume them as a part of a meal, rather than on their own.
  • Use a soft-bristle brush and do not brush gums vigorously; save your gums from receding.
  • Use a straw when consuming acidic liquids to protect enamel.
  • Use a straw when drinking dark liquids that may stain your teeth.  This takes all the pleasure out of consuming tea or coffee.
  • Weston Price recommended cod liver oil and Activator X for treating your teeth. A combo of cod liver oil and butter oil can be found on www.greenpasture.org.
  • You can use a black teabag to surround an abscessed tooth to relieve swelling and reduce inflammation. Leave it on for 15 minutes but be advised that black tea can stain teeth over time.

ALTERNATIVE THERAPIES

PREVENTION

  • A wholesome, balanced diet
  • Regular exercise
  • Low stress levels
  • Quality sleep
  • Regular cleanings and dental checkups
  • Brush after every meal
  • Drink water throughout the day
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