For a long time, tooth decay has primarily been linked to common factors that include eating foods containing high amounts of sugar and poor dental care such as lack of regular brushing and flossing of teeth among others. However, did you know that there exists a correlation between Vitamin D and tooth decay? Well, a recent study has established that Vitamin D plays a potential role in preventing dental caries, commonly referred to as tooth decay. So, what is the connection in this?
The new findings
After reviewing various existing studies published on the National Reviews journal, scientists found out that Vitamin D has the potential to prevent tooth decay. The review involved an analysis of data collected from clinical trials published between the 1920s and 1980s. During the trials, the nutrient was administered through provision of diet products rich in Vitamin D such as cod liver oil and through supplemental UV radiation. According to the data collected from 3000 children enrolled in the 24 clinical trials, a supplementation of Vitamin D resulted in a 50 percent drop in the cases of tooth decay. This was mainly attributed to the fact that Vitamin D enhances the absorption of calcium in the body which in turn helps strengthen the teeth through a mineralization process. In addition, Vitamin D receptors which form part of the body’s immune system also facilitate an increase in the amount of antimicrobial proteins which help to fight bacteria that causes dental caries.
This study was led by Dr. Phillippe Hujoel who reviewed various clinical trials carried out in Canada, Great Britain, Austria, United States, Sweden and New Zealand. However, various researchers have cautioned against relying on these findings claiming that the review had several limitations. For example, they pointed out that the trial participants had lived in an era that differs widely from today’s environment. Nevertheless, Vitamin D remains to be one of the vital nutrients in the human body linked to numerous health benefits especially for the children.
Scientists have for long considered Vitamin D as an essential nutrient in the formation of healthy bones in human. The most common method through which the nutrient is availed to human is by exposure to sunlight’s UV radiation. Additionally, Vitamin D can also be supplemented in the diet through consumption of foods such as fish, whole grain cereals, and cod liver oil among others.
Why Vitamin D is such an important nutrient to children
Generally, vitamin D has gained a massive reputation in the recent years as a nutrient required by everybody regardless of their age. Besides, most nutritionists today view it as a cure-all sort of supplement. For example, high levels of the vitamin in women have been found to greatly reduce the risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease. Besides, there have also been strong links identified between low levels of vitamin D and increased cases of heart disease and cancer. However, the most prevalent condition linked to Vitamin D deficiency in human has been rickets in children. This is especially common in cultures where children have very limited play time while in school which means they get minimal exposure to sunlight. Despite sunlight being a major source of vitamin D, it is also important to supplement it by providing foods rich in the nutrient such as milk and fishes. In most of the cultures where children do not get enough of the vitamin, it is easy to tell that cases of tooth decay have been on the rise. This further confirms the correlation between these two phenomena. It has also been established that a vitamin D deficiency affects teeth development whereby it seems to cause late teething in children.
The debate on the relation between vitamin D and tooth decay is relatively new in the medical and nutrition fields. The recent study on the same has introduced a new perspective to the traditionally known causes of tooth decay such as poor dental care and unchecked diet. This has been further confirmed after various surveys carried out observed that declining levels of Vitamin D in numerous populations today can be linked to the increasing cases of dental caries in children. It is important to understand that vitamin D has other numerous health benefits to the human body besides preventing tooth decay. For more information regarding Vitamin D or to discuss the wellness of your teeth, call Cosmetic Dentist in Boca Raton.
Call Cosmetic Dentist in Boca Raton at (561) 232-2070