Vitamin D and Dental Caries

So people have been recognizing you as a person with a beautiful smile? But, lately, your smile has been sealed in a modest attempt to conceal your teeth? Are you embarrassed enough to show your once-upon-a-time pearly whites?Maybe, insufficient levels of Vitamin D are responsible for your deteriorating tooth health.

 

Dental caries is also known as tooth decay, which is one of the most common diseases in the world. It is a tooth infection, basically caused by bacteria on the surface of teeth. This process leads to a loss of the hard tissues of your teeth.

Dental caries occurs when bacteria reside on the surface and can turn certain sugars into acids, which can demineralize the hard tissues of your teeth.The bacteria form a sticky layer, which helps protect the bacteria from being removed by your immune system. So, what causes dental caries to occur?

Frequent snacking on sugary foods, not cleaning your teeth properly twice a day or after meals and not being able to produce enough saliva – all increase your risk of developing dental caries. Research has exhibited that vitamin D may aid in reducing the risk of dental caries in infants and younger children. Studies have shown that children with dental caries have lower levels of vitamin D.

 

But here, more experiments are needed to know for sure and prove the fact if vitamin D can help to treat dental caries. Doctors and scientists don’t strongly know yet whether taking a vitamin D supplement, or getting more sun exposure, can help to prevent or treat dental caries.

Vitamin D is crucial for increasing the absorption of calcium and phosphate from the food you eat. Increasing the absorption of calcium and phosphate can improve the strength of your teeth and their ability to fight demineralization from bacteria.

 

Vitamin D receptors are found on cells in your immune system and in your teeth. Vitamin D is able to bind to these receptors and increase the amount of good antimicrobial proteins in your body which help to fight the bacteria that cause dental caries. A 2013 research review from the United States looked at many studies that measured the effects of UV therapy and vitamin D supplementation in preventing dental caries.

 

The main findings were:

  1. Intake of vitamin D supplements resulted in a 47% reduced rate of dental caries.
  2. Taking vitamin D supplements had no effect on caries in those older than 13 years old, especially in girls.
  3. The researchers concluded that taking vitamin D supplements may help protect against developing dental caries in children younger than 13 years old

To explore the role of supplementation on tooth retention, the researchers studied a group of more than 140 older adults for a specific period. The participants were divided into two groups, wherein one group took either placebo and the other group took 500 mg of calcium plus 700 units of vitamin D daily for three years. Both during and after the trial, their teeth were examined periodically.

For those who took supplements, the likelihood of losing one or more teeth was 40% less, even two years later. Tooth loss was also linked to the number of cavities, frequency of flossing, and use of thiazide diuretics, a type of medication that helps lower blood pressure.

 

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