The proper awareness about the diet for healthy gums is important for your oral health.
It has been acknowledged for many years that nutritional intake can impact the levels of inflammation seen in a number of diseases, and this is no less the case in periodontitis i.e. inflammation of the tissue around the teeth, often causing shrinkage of the gums and loosening of the teeth.
Additionally, intake of nutritional supplements and dietary components have been known to affect healing after periodontal surgery, bone formation and periodontal regeneration
To improve quality of life and well-being of patients with periodontal disease or gum disease, we would like to discuss the effects of nutrition.
STARCH AND SUGAR: A diet high in Carbohydrates (Starch and Sugar) promotes tooth decay for all ages. The bacteria in your mouth use carbohydrates to produce acids that cause decay. However, milk sugar (lactose) causes minimal tooth decay.
Vitamins for Gums
Vitamins are essential for general heath and normal functioning. Similarly, various vitamins are required for maintaining health oral and periodontal tissues. Nutritional deficiency of vitamins results in diseases like scurvy and rickets.
VITAMIN A: Research indicates insignificant improvement in periodontal health upon supplementation.
VITAMIN B” Supplementation may accelerate post-surgical healin
VITAMIN C: Gingival or Gum bleeding and inflammation are characteristic of scurvy. Supplementation may improve outcomes of periodontal therapy.
VITAMIN D: Deficiency may lead to delayed post-surgical healing. Local application may accelerate post-surgical healing
VITAMIN E: Impaired gingival wound healing
VITAMIN K: Deficiency may lead to gingival bleeding. No known effects on periodontal therapy if supplementation used as an adjunct.
Dietary Minerals and Trace Elements
Intake of mineral nutrients required in abundance like calcium phosphorus etc and elements required in small concentrations (usually called trace elements) like iron, manganese etc also have effect on periodontal health.
CALCIUM: Required for formation of teeth and bones. Supplementation improves outcomes of non-surgical periodontal therapy. Local application enhances osseointegration.
MAGNESIUM: Required for cell metabolism and bone formation. Supplementation may improve outcomes of non-surgical periodontal therapy.
IRON: Possible anti-oxidant effect on periodontium.
ZINC: Possible anti-oxidant effect on periodontium. Reduces severity of diabetes-induced periodontitis
FLUORIDE: Supplementation and topical application prevents dental caries.
Although some studies suggest that improving nutrition and supplementation of vitamins and minerals, particularly vitamin C, may contribute to improvement of periodontal health, there are a number of limitations of the current research that should be overcome.
The reported treatment effects are too small to indicate the magnitude of therapeutic supplements when used as an addition to periodontal therapy. Hence, well-designed, long-term studies are needed to ascertain the direct effects of dietary supplements on the outcomes on periodontal diseases.