The relationship of these teeth to general health and efficacy was appreciated in an overall long before vitamins or focal infections were heard of. Toothaches used to be as inevitable as colds, and slave buyers and horse dealers inspected the teeth of the prospective purchases before purchasing. But just in recent times has attention been given to the care and preservation of the teeth.
Early studies of this cause and prevention of dental caries indicated there might be one causative factor but farther results show that the problem is a complex one, with diet, heredity, internal secretions, mechanical factors, and oral hygiene of greatest significance.
Diet and Dental Caries
There is now general agreement that diet probably is the most important single element in the maintenance of audio, healthy teeth, and that a decent diet is most essential during the period of most rapid growth. McCullum and Simmonds conclude in an experimental study that rats that are stored on a deficient diet in part of their developing period have poor teeth and premature decay, even though an adequate diet is provided afterwards. In today before viosterol had been developed and before cod-liver oil had been widely used, McCullum reported that at the age of entering faculty 9 percent of children who were breastfed for at least 6 months had dental caries, 22 percent of children who were fed cow’s milk or on milk combinations, and 27 percent who were fed oatmeal water and other prepared foods. This would indicate that the foundation of dental health is put quite early in life, but it now seems that the period is also of fantastic importance in this regard. As a result, the emphasis is currently being put upon the right diet while pregnant.
Important though diet is, there does not seem to be any single dietary component which is responsible for dental caries. Magnesium and phosphorus, the two minerals found in teeth and bones, and vitamin D, which regulates the utilization of those minerals from the body, are clearly crucial. Of these, calcium and vitamin D were thought to be of greatest significance: but the more recent work appears to indicate that phosphorus is of as great if not greater significance than calcium. Milk, certain vegetables, and fish foods are rich sources of calcium and phosphorus. Vitamin D is quite likely to be deficient in natural foods during the winter months but is easily administered in the kind of cod-liver oil, vitamin D milk, or viosterol. Visit Home | Port Hawkesbury Dental Group
Kids have been denied candy because of the belief that sugar is connected to dental decay, and certain studies completed in institutions for orphans in which the diet is strictly controlled suggest that the prevalence of dental caries is directly associated with the total amount of carbohydrate from the diet. Cereals where the hull of this grain was removed seem to have an unfavorable influence upon the development of the teeth, and many investigators think that oatmeal leads directly into the formation of caries.
Divergent opinions concerning the terms of diet to dental health leave one quite confused. Apparently, no one dietary element accounts for resistance to caries, but various elements are necessary for the proper growth and continuing soundness of tooth. For practical purposes, a well-rounded diet, containing liberal quantities of milk, orange juice, fresh fruits, vegetables, as well as for children cod-liver oil another kind of vitamin D, might be depended upon to provide the nutritional demands of tooth.
It is frequently said that”a clean tooth never decays.” Whether or not this is accurate depends upon the definition of cleanliness. If cleanliness implies freedom from bacteria, the announcement probably is accurate. But with germs constantly present in the mouth and at the food we consume, it is impossible to have the teeth bacteriologically clean.
The mechanism of corrosion is through the action of acids produced by bacterial decomposition of food, first on the enamel and then on the softer dentine of the tooth. The activity of the acid upon the tooth arrangement can start in any crevice, irregularity, or fracture in tooth. The quantity of decomposition and acid formation is greatest when there are gross accumulations of food materials. In reality, it is between the teeth, in which it’s hard to prevent accumulations of meals that decay most often begins. Therefore, although cleanliness of their teeth is alluring the only factor in the prevention of dental decay, as well as the most important one it is not without importance.
Some clarification of this part of the problem has been given by recent studies of the bacteria found in the mouth. If a specific germ known as Lactobacillus acidophilus occurs in volume caries develop with fantastic rapidity. This is because these bacteria act upon carbs, especially sugars, on and around the teeth to produce acids which dissolve the enamel and the dentine. These studies also have proven that if men have an excessive number of lactobacilli in their mouths, then the number of caries can be reduced from the elimination of sugars and other readily fermentable carbohydrates from the diet.
It now seems that certain compounds applied to the teeth will neutralize the acids formed by the activity of bacteria upon carbs and so reduce caries. Some of the chemicals are now being included in so-called”ammoniated” toothpaste.
Fluorine and Dental Caries
During the past many years investigations have taken another turn. It was determined that the only chemical distinction between carious and non-carious teeth is the fact that carious teeth comprise less fluorine, a compound element that’s present in minute amounts in the bones and teeth. This was accompanied by an investigation, of their fluorine content of their drinking water in areas in which dental caries are rare and areas in which they’re prevalent. Here again, a gap in fluorine content was discovered. From these studies, it’s been concluded that the existence of approximately 1 part of fluorine per 1,000,000 parts of drinking water causes a diminished incidence of caries. Incidentally, fluorine in this amount causes some mottling of the teeth.
Proceeding on the basis of the information, several researchers have experimented with the application of fluorine into the face of the teeth of children. Within this analysis, Knutson and Armstrong reported that the use of two percent sodium fluoride solution to the teeth resulted in 40 percent fewer caries over a period of a year at 289 children than grown in 326 untreated controls. No therapeutic effect was mentioned on teeth in which caries existed. This use of fluorine for the prevention of dental caries is a promising line of investigation but it is still in the experimental stage.
Other exceptionally significant studies are the ones where sodium fluoride in minute quantities is being added into the water supplies of many cities that have low fluoride content. If this should prove effective in preventing caries, then it’ll be a great forward step in the control of the most widespread of human diseases.