7 Tips for Improving Your Dental Health

7 Tips for Improving Your Dental Health post image

It is well known that gum disease is related to heart disease. People with periodontal disease are twice as likely to have coronary artery disease and having gum and dental problems such as gingivitis (inflammation of the gums), cavities and missing teeth are good predictors of heart disease. Taking care of your mouth can save your life which is why it is critical to pay attention to your dental health and do all you can to achieve a healthy mouth.

Periodontal Infections are Implicated in Heart Disease

Periodontal infections are chronic infections, which have been found to be implicated in heart disease. In this study published in Circulation, the researchers studied 657 people without known heart disease. Interestingly, the relationship between periodontal microbiota and subclinical (not showing up on the usual clinical tests) atherosclerosis was studied.

They found that people who had higher blood levels of overall periodontal bacteria –  and specially, certain disease-causing bacteria in the mouth, were more likely to have atherosclerosis in the carotid artery in the neck. Clogging of the carotid arteries can lead to stroke.

Atherosclerosis, also known as – hardening of the arteries – develops when deposits of fats and other substances in the blood begin to stick to the sides of the arteries. These deposits, called plaques, can build up and narrow your arteries, causing a blockage. This may lead to a heart attack or stroke, depending on the location of the blockage.

Bleeding Gums – A Sign of Systemic Inflammation

There’s evidence that what goes on in the mouth has systemic implications. It’s never normal to have bleeding gums. Other gum problems like pockets or a high amount of decay causing bacteria in the mouth, are also implicated.

All aspects of dental health reflect what is going on in the body. Poor dental health will eventually lead to other serious health problems like heart disease, diabetes and stroke.

Bleeding and swollen gums may also indicate poor sugar control in a diabetic. During pregnancy, oral disease increases the risk of gestational diabetes as well as the prevalence of prostaglandin, a hormone that stimulates uterine contractions, which increases the odds of delivering a low-birth weight baby.

Additionally, studies have shown that primary caregivers pass oral bacteria directly to children. Some people feel that this is actually a good thing – a novel method of transferring gut bacteria to your child. However, the ADA takes exemption to this by stating that pacifier sharing is a way of passing decay causing bacteria to babies.

How To Take Care of Your Gums

The best treatment, is, of course prevention. Dr. Weston Price – a brilliant nutritionist – was a dentist who made the associations between good dental health and overall good health. His book Nutrition and Physical Degeneration documents his wide world studies of traditional cultures and how they achieved radiant health – something we, in the present day, need to learn.

Keeping your mouth, teeth and gums healthy will also keep your body healthy. Here’s how.

  • Eliminate grains and sugar. This is food for the bacteria that lives in the mouth and causes cavities and gum disease.
  • Start eating fermented foods such as yogurt, kefir, and fermented vegetables as they provide your body with beneficial bacteria that will crowd out the disease causing bacteria.
  • Eat healthy fats like butter, coconut oil. olive oil, avocado and fats from pastured animals with your vegetables, as they help your body absorb the minerals in the vegetables. This helps build strong bones and teeth.
  • Make bone broth and drink as much as you can. The minerals in bone broth are easily absorbed and assimilated., in addition to the many other benefits of bone broth.
  • Take fermented cod liver oil and vitamin K2 for insurance that you are getting the appropriate mineral activators so that your body can utilize the minerals and put them where they belong – in the bones and not in the soft tissues such as the heart or joints.
  • Practice oil pulling. This is a ancient Ayurvedic technique that removes harmful bacteria from the mouth. It is particularly used as a powerful cleansing and healing remedy for conditions of the mouth, gums and sinuses. It is very simple to do at home and is a great way to help detoxify.
  • Practice good dental hygiene and use dental products that will provide support without the use of toxic substances such as those found in conventional dental care products.

Here is a product that I really like. What natural products do you use? Leave a comment and let me know!



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Leave a Comment

  • Dipitie April 17, 2014, 8:38 pm

    This is all fine and good, but I can’t figure out why I have a cavity after cutting out grains and sugar, moving to a real food diet, and adding in fermented cod liver oil. The only other thing I did with my teeth was move to a toothpaste without flouride. I thought flouride was bad for you, but neither are fillings and I’m not ready to get another root canal :/

    • Martha Ray Barger February 4, 2017, 7:35 pm

      I have this concern as well. I am rinsing my mouth with High PH water after eating citrus and really after eating or drinking any high acid foods. Not sure that the acid might be damaging my teeth and I am hoping this helps.
      I’d read before not to brush right after eating as the acid softens the teeth.
      Brushing Your Teeth After Eating Acidic Foods Can Damage Your Enamel

  • Figen April 18, 2014, 2:27 am

    Same for me too. My teeth get more sensitive by the day. I have been using some essential oils but is does not lessen the sentitivity. When I was using fluoride products that was not a problem. Anyone good idea’s?

  • Jill April 18, 2014, 10:40 am

    I’ve started oil pulling which really helps with sensitivity and I am hoping will heal a pocket I have developed. I don’t know why the pocket developed, but apparently the way my teeth are situated with a space is causing some irritation to the area and the pocket formed according to my dentist. Sometimes things go on that is out of our control no matter how careful we are. There are always new things to try to improve the situation.

    • Figen April 25, 2014, 1:50 am

      Oil pulling does not help me with my sensitive teeth. I have been doing it for 9 months now. But my teeth are whiter than ever. And my tartar problem is mostly gone.

  • Janine April 21, 2014, 8:58 pm

    All great tips. I am happy that all of my kids have healthy gums and teeth. Too bad they are third generation cats with tiny jaws and will all need braces. But we are thankful for good gums!

  • Caryl Anne May 1, 2014, 4:03 pm

    Great article! I love how you linked the food to oral health. They are both extremely important and work hand and hand with one another. Thanks for sharing!

  • Ron Roberts May 2, 2014, 4:24 am

    Great post and tips! I have been cutting grains and sugar (not completely but a great amount of them) for about one year. I feel that my oral health is kind of in a good condition (at least not getting worse), but have to go to see dentist again to see whether my teeth are really ‘okay’. After reading this post, I’m interested in oil pulling and may give it a try somehow.

  • Caleb May 12, 2014, 10:26 am

    These are great tips for oral health and oral care. The health of our teeth and gums can have a major impact on our overall health. Failing to take care of our gums and maintaining our oral health can have a major impact on our overall health.

  • Patrice M. Theiss June 2, 2014, 2:53 am

    Great tips here. Maintaining proper oral care means maintaining overall health as well. Be sure to have your teeth checked by your dentist also for regular dental cleanings and checkup to achieve a healthy mouth, teeth and gums.

  • Manjitsingh Bhalla September 25, 2014, 4:46 am

    Indeed, the great tips! Whenever it comes to healthy dental tips, it is always admirable to have it and practice so far – just to see our teeth ever working with better oral health. How a dental health once diseased can trigger other problems is deadly to know. Tooth decay, gum disease, bad breath and other periodontal problems, quite evident; much unfortunately, with them, the triggering physical conditions that have the strong interrelations are just awesome; it may come up with worsening heart disease, stomach problems etc.

    Taking care of gums is how much important is fully understood; attributed to the consequences. Appreciate the tips provided on gum care. Preventing sugary and grainy foods is a certain way out; keeping a mouth bacteria-free. Yes, cod liver oil and vitamin K2, favorable effects (other tactics as well) & the best oral hygiene practices – on top of all!

  • Cornelia E. Sanchez October 19, 2015, 12:43 pm

    Practicing good nutrition can lead to good oral health. And although it takes a lot of other concerns attaining a healthy mind and body, you can help prevent the possibility of health complications by practicing good oral health.

  • Judy Wilson May 3, 2016, 4:10 pm

    You’re right about how the best way to have healthy teeth and gums is prevention. Eating foods that are good for oral health and maintaining a good brushing and flossing routine would help with that. I liked that you specified a few foods that can help me have a healthier mouth. It’s interesting that fermented foods like kefir are included in this list since they have bacteria that can crowd out disease causing bacteria. I think they can also help by improving digestion so that the nutrients from vegetables and healthy fats will be easier absorbed into the body.

  • Johnny McCarron November 11, 2016, 6:57 pm

    I had no idea that eliminating grains and sugar could be an important step when trying to keep your gums healthy. However, such logic makes sense as I understand that your diet really has a profound impact on your overall health. I don’t see why it wouldn’t have any effect on your gums. Do you have any other tips about flossing?

  • Lillian Schaeffer December 9, 2016, 2:54 pm

    I like how you pointed out that it’s never normal to have bleeding gums. Mine have been bleeding a little bit recently when I brush my teeth, but there hasn’t been any pain involved, so I didn’t think it was a problem. It sounds like it could be indicative of more serious issues though, so maybe I should visit a dentist as soon as possible.

  • Johnny McCarron February 17, 2017, 5:29 pm

    I’ll have to bookmark this page as I really want to improve my oral health. However, I don’t know a lot about how to take care of my gums. So, I’m happy that you touched on that. Do you have any other tips about caring for your oral health?

    • Dr. Jill February 18, 2017, 1:18 pm

      Hi Johnny,
      Oil Pulling is a powerful tool that you can do everyday.

  • alankrita June 19, 2017, 7:43 am

    hey! what an informative post! i really liked all the information you shared. thank you so much for providing us with such useful information. thanks a lot.

  • Dr Viral Patel July 24, 2017, 8:46 am

    this are 7 golden rules of dentistry.