It is now a widely recognized fact that gum disease and tooth decay are diseases of modern civilization. Modern diet and an overemphasis on refined foods, cereals, processed and synthetic foods lead to a condition of spongy and receding gums. Various gum diseases such as pyorrhea and gingivitis are also a consequence of our modern living habits.
Processed and synthetic formulations such as mouthwashes and chemical-based toothpastes often aggravate the problem that they claim to correct. Often the consequences can be more severe. The Dept. of Health and Human Services has issued warnings that alcohol in mouthwashes is linked to both oral and throat cancer. Fluoride in toothpastes has already been linked to cancer.
The bottom line is why use synthetic substances, when nature has provided a wealth of herbs and fruit that have a phenomenal effect on oral health with absolutely no side effects. These “miracles” of nature are so powerful that our forefathers used them for thousands of years. As an example, just try pressing a clove between your teeth in cases of toothaches and feel the pain vanish!!
Five natural remedies for gum disease
1. Vitamin C
The link between vitamin C deficiency and gum disease is well known. Back in the 18th century, sailors ate limes during long trips at sea to keep their gums from bleeding. A study in the Journal of Periodontology found that people with low intakes of vitamin C had higher rates of periodontal disease
To boost your intake of vitamin C, eat foods rich in vitamin C, such as grapefruit, oranges, kiwi fruit, mango, papaya, strawberry, red pepper, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, and cantaloupe. Vitamin C can also be taken in supplement form. Avoid chewable vitamin C, because the acidity may promote the erosion of tooth enamel over time.
2. Vitamin D
Vitamin D has been found to have anti-inflammatory effects and may reduce susceptibility to gum disease.
Sun exposure is one of the most important sources of vitamin D, because UV rays from the sun trigger the synthesis of vitamin D in skin. The National Institutes of Health Office of Dietary Supplements suggests 10 to 15 minutes of sun exposure twice a week, however the further away from the equator you live, the more polluted your city, and the more cloud cover there is, the less likely that this sun exposure will be sufficient. Look for at least 200 IU in a multivitamin.
3. Stress reduction
Stress contributes to gum disease by increasing plaque accumulation. A German study examined how exam stress would impact plaque and gum bleeding. All students had a professional tooth cleaning 4 weeks prior to exams and then 4 weeks after exams. They found that students had significantly higher rates of plaque and gingivitis after exams compared to a control group of students that didn’t write exams. Relaxation techniques include
4. Coenzyme Q10
Some evidence has linked gum disease to lower levels of coenzyme Q10, an antioxidant made naturally in the body, found widely in foods, and available in supplement form. Some researchers say that coenzyme q10 is needed to properly repair gum tissue. A study by Osaka University in Japan found improvement in infection and inflammation after 3 weeks of taking a topical coenzyme q10 toothpaste. You can look find toothpaste containing coenzyme q10 at natural grocers, health food stores, and online. For more information on coenzyme q10, read the Coenzyme Q10 Fact Sheet,
Cranberry may help gum disease by preventing bacteria from sticking to teeth. Look for cranberry juice with no added sugar at a health food store. A typical amount is 4 ounces a day. Consult your doctor if you are taking the blood thinner warfarin or have kidney stones.
Neem Twigs have been used by thousands of people for hundreds of years as an extremely effective method of total oral hygiene.
Clove and its oil is an absolute wonder therapy for toothaches and gum disorders. It is an excellent pain reliever and often dentists use it to numb the gums prior to administering a shot. Besides this clove oil is also useful in relieving sore throats and is a powerful breath freshener.
Besides neem and clove, there are several vital herbs and natural oils that are said to work wonders on tooth and gum health. A mixture of Eucalyptus, clove, and Spearmint is extremely potent in eliminating harmful bacterial build-up in the mouth and a very good cleansing agent.
Majuphal is a fruit that has a remarkable astringent property and it reduces over secretion of mucous. It’s haemostatic property ensures its beneficial effect on bleeding gums and on gingivitis.
The Catechu (Khadir) bark is beneficial in cases of toothache and spongy gums.
Ginger is an excellent astringent wash for the teeth and lemon is a good whitener.
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