Getting outside in the sun is important for our health and wellbeing for many reasons! However, did you know it can actually help the health of your teeth as well? A little sunshine has been found to improve mood, our immune functions, and catalyzes vitamin D production in our bodies. Keep reading for some advice on how sunshine can help your teeth from Dr. Laurie McNamara McClatchey and Dr. James A. McNamara at McNamara Orthodontics.
While in braces, healthy teeth and gums are of vital importance. Vitamin D actually helps to support oral health in two ways:
- It helps our bodies to absorb and utilize calcium
Vitamin D has several major functions. One of its major functions is moderating other vitamins and minerals – including calcium. Calcium is crucial because it fortifies our teeth and supports jaw and bone strength. Several studies have shown greater cavity risk for people who live in regions with little sunlight – sometimes as much as double the risk.
- It may help fight periodontal disease
Vitamin D is also an anti-inflammatory. Periodontal disease, which is the result of inflammation of the gums due to harmful bacteria, is the #1 cause of tooth loss in adults. Several studies have found that people with high vitamin D levels are less likely to experience bleeding gums and gum detachment.
While too much sun can actually be damaging to the skin, a little sun will be helpful. Not much sun is required to get your daily dose of vitamin D, often 10 or so minutes is enough! Unfortunately, cloudy days do come around. When they do be sure to eat foods like: egg yolks, fatty fish, fortified milk & juices, and vitamin D supplements to help keep your vitamin D levels up. So, go out and soak up a little sun today! As always, if you have any questions about your orthodontic treatment, please contact our office.