Increase your intake of alkaline foods (cruciferous and green leafy vegetables, cayenne peppers, garlic) to compensate for the erosive acidic nature of digestive acids. Cut back on sweets, candy, fruit juice, soda, and foods with hidden sugars like processed and packaged snacks. Try ayurvedic remedies like mustard, amla, licorice to keep a cavity from getting worse!
Nothing evokes mortal fear like the sound of a dentist’s drill. Once the dentist has proclaimed that you have a cavity, you probably feel the drill and a filling are inevitable. Maybe not! Some natural ways can help reverse the damage caused to your teeth and heal those dreaded cavities.
What Causes Cavities?
Human teeth are actually layers of extremely hard tissue embedded in the gums. Once bacteria break down the outermost enamel and the next layer, dentin, by the action of acids they create from food sugars, a cavity is born.1 And while we have been conditioned to believe that it’s hard to fix damaged teeth, this isn’t entirely true.
Frequent exposure to sugar rich foods enables bacteria to use them to create more acid, leaching tooth enamel of its minerals and hastening decay.2 So, by changing your diet, you can stall the problem or prevent further cavities from developing.
- Cut down intake of sweets, candy, and chocolate.
- Avoid foods with hidden sugars like processed foods and packaged snacks.
- Cut down how much fruit juice you have – it’s rich in sugar too.
- Stay off the soda. A 12-ounce serving contains anywhere from 12 to 40 grams of sugar on an average.3
Heal Your Cavities
Neutralizing the acidic nature of saliva can prevent the erosion of our teeth. Scientific work on dental films clearly indicates that oral alkali production can be very effective in managing caries. It directly increases the pH value of dental plaque, causing it to work toward remineralization and away from decay. An alkaline environment is also preferred by “good” bacteria and it suppresses the growth of cariogenic bacteria, that is, tooth decay-causing bacteria.4
The trick is to up alkali levels – by consuming more alkaline foods like cruciferous vegetables, green leafy vegetables, cayenne peppers, and garlic – to compensate for the erosive acidic nature of digestive acids.5
Get some sunshine. Vitamin D produced by exposing your body to direct sunlight induces cathelicidin, an antimicrobial peptide. This counters oral bacteria linked to dental caries.6
Reverse Your Cavities
Your best line of defense when it comes to reversing cavities is fluoride. The fluoride in your water supply should be adequate, but those prone to cavities could try a fluoride toothpaste and mouth rinse, and a fluoride varnish. This will help you avoid mineral loss from your enamel and thwart attempts by the bacteria to generate that cavity-causing acid. Better yet, it may even help reverse the process by replacing some of that lost mineral content.7
Many practitioners confirm that dental health is totally under our control through the food we eat and its nutritional value.8 For healthy teeth and bones, we need a diet rich in fat-soluble vitamins and minerals. So eat plenty of calcium and vitamin D rich food like seafood, dairy, fortified foods, soy, and green leafy vegetables to help make your teeth stronger.
A study showed, diet can make a difference. A group of children with caries was given a cereal-free, vitamin D and calcium rich diet for 6 months. The formation and spread of active caries were significantly reduced by this diet – high in nutrients and low in processed food.9
Ayurvedic Cures For Cavities
In Ayurvedic texts, mustard as a food ingredient and as a cooking oil is recommended for its oral cavity healing properties.10. Similarly, amla and licorice rebuild oral health and promote anti-cavity actions.
Oil used by way of oil pulling is also a very effective Ayurvedic technique. It involves swishing a tablespoon of oil in your mouth for about 20 minutes. When done on an empty stomach this process pulls out all toxins in the body and improves oral health.11
References [ + ]
|1.||↑||The Tooth Decay Process: How to Reverse It and Avoid a Cavity, National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research.|
|2, 7.||↑||The Tooth Decay Process: How to Reverse It and Avoid a Cavity, National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research.|
|3.||↑||How sweet is it? Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health.|
|4.||↑||Liu, Ya-Ling, Marcelle Nascimento, and Robert A. Burne. “Progress toward understanding the contribution of alkali generation in dental biofilms to inhibition of dental caries.” International journal of oral science 4, no. 3 (2012): 135-140.|
|5.||↑||Burne, Robert A., and Robert E. Marquis. “Alkali production by oral bacteria and protection against dental caries.” FEMS microbiology letters 193, no. 1 (2000): 1-6.|
|6.||↑||Grant, William B. “A review of the role of solar ultraviolet-B irradiance and vitamin D in reducing risk of dental caries.” Dermato-endocrinology 3, no. 3 (2011): 193-198.|
|8.||↑||Nagel, Ramiel. Cure Tooth Decay: Remineralize Cavities and Repair Your Teeth Naturally with Good Food. Rami Nagel, 2012.|
|9.||↑||Mellanby, May, and C. Lee Pattison. “Remarks on the influence of a cereal-free diet rich in vitamin D and calcium on dental caries in children.” British medical journal 1, no. 3715 (1932): 507.|
|10.||↑||Ram Manohar, P., Reshmi Pushpan, and S. Rohini. “Mustard and its uses in Ayurveda.” Indian Journal of Traditional Knowledge 8, no. 3 (2009): 400-404.|
|11.||↑||Singh, Abhinav, and Bharathi Purohit. “Tooth brushing, oil pulling and tissue regeneration: A review of holistic approaches to oral health.” Journal of Ayurveda and integrative medicine 2, no. 2 (2011): 64.|