What are the Dental Diseases Caused by an Unhealthy Diet?
Diet plays a major role in keeping our teeth and gums healthy. The sugary food that we are so fond of is also liked by the bacteria present in our mouth. So, even while maintaining a good oral hygiene regime, we may end up with dental issues if we continue our obsession with ‘tasty’ fast foods and aereated drinks that are rich in fats and sugars.
It is advised that one should have a diet rich in calcium, fibre, proteins, and vitamins but low in fat such as fresh fruits and vegetables, yogurt, almonds, cheese, whole grains, beans, tofu, lean meat, fortified soy drinks, salmon, and others to keep the dental issues at bay. A fibre rich food produces enough saliva to wash off the colonies of bacteria responsible for plaque build-up.
Further, in addition to eating a healthy diet and maintaining good oral hygiene, it is advisable to consult a dentist in Northcote periodically to identify (and fix) any dental issues. Let us understand in some detail the correlation between food and dental health.
Types of Dental Diseases Caused by Consuming an Unhealthy Diet
The regular intake of unhealthy food, besides causing a range of health issues, can create several dental problems as well. Here are a few dental diseases that are caused due to eating an unhealthy diet.
Dental Caries: Also known as cavitation, dental caries occur when the hard tissues of our teeth such as enamel, dentin, and cementum are eroded by acids released by the bacteria present in our mouth. The acid is produced when the colonies of bacteria break down the sugar present in the food consumed by us.
During the initial stage of having dental caries, one may not see any prominent symptom(s), but as the problem progresses, the person may suffer from dental ache, infections, and abscesses. To get a remedy for dental caries, the affected person must visit a dental clinic.
Periodontal disease: Smoking or excessive intake of tobacco in any form can lead to gingivitis or periodontal disease. Some studies have shown that an acute deficiency of vitamin C can cause scurvy-induced periodontitis.
Moreover, poor oral hygiene such as missing out on regular flossing can lead to this disease with symptoms such as swollen, red, and tender gums. Although it is fairly treatable, extreme cases might require surgery.
Dental Erosion: Another type of dental disease is dental erosion wherein the acids we consume with food attack and dissolve the tooth surface. Further, excessive acid released from our stomach can also cause this damage. In this process of decay, the enamel is slowly eroded leaving the dentine exposed.
Due to the exposed dentine or root, one might grow a sensitivity to hot or cold food. If left untreated, the problem can damage the affected tooth beyond repair. Further, the fondness for aerated or fizzy drinks containing a lot of sugars can cause dental erosions and soft carious lesions at the junction of the tooth crown and gingiva. To give an example, 600 ml of a soft drink may contain between 52 – 64 grams of sugar, which is certainly very high.
What Should You Consume and Discard from Your Diet?
Desserts, beverages with preservatives, confectionery cakes, biscuits, energy drinks, and fruit-based sweetened drinks are sources of free sugars in our daily diet. It is advised that people should stay away from consuming such sugary food to keep their teeth and gums healthy.
According to WHO, the daily intake of sugar should be a maximum of six teaspoons. However, most people, especially in Australia, are taking around 14 teaspoons of sugar a day – a sureshot recipe for tooth decay.
It is advisable that people should drink more tap water instead of the carbonated drinks that are rich in sugar. Also, for drinking soft drinks, people should use straw as it can minimize the time the drink remains in contact with the teeth thereby reducing the chances of having cavities. However, make sure to rinse the mouth after sipping a soft drink.
When one consults a dentist in Northcote, he or she may be advised to make some dietary changes to recover from any existing dental issue. All of the aforementioned dental or oral problems are reversible provided one follows a healthy diet and consumes a lot of fibre-rich fruits and vegetables every day.
Conclusion: Dental diseases can create a deep impact on a person’s self-esteem and expose him or her to various types of discomforts and serious health issues. In case you want to have a dental check-up, then book an appointment at the Northcote Family Dental Clinic and consult with an AHPRA registered dentist. For more information, you can call @ (03) 94815747.