When you think of calcium, you most probably think of bones and while it’s true that this mineral is vital for keeping our bones strong it is also vital to the health of our teeth. In fact, 99 percent of the body’s calcium reserves are stored in the bones and teeth, where the mineral provides structural support. Let’s take a look at some calcium facts and why your teeth need it so much.
Did you know that aside from strengthening bones and teeth, calcium also helps muscles, blood vessels, and nerves work properly? Calcium is found in blood, muscle and in the fluid between your cells. It helps to keep the muscles and blood vessels functioning normally. It regulates hormones and enzymes and helps to transmit nerve impulses. It’s a very busy mineral indeed!
You might not think that osteoporosis has anything to do with your teeth but research has shown that osteoporosis can cause the jaw to weaken. As the jaw bone anchors your teeth in place, if it becomes damaged then teeth can loosen or even fall out. This is why calcium is directly important for your oral health too as women with osteoporosis are three times more likely to lose teeth than women with healthy bones. For ifsc dental, visit http://www.docklandsdental.ie/.
Calcium is essential for people in every life stage, from infants to the elderly. Babies, children, and teenagers need calcium in order to develop strong bones and teeth; adults need it to maintain a strong skeleton and healthy teeth. A calcium-deficient diet increases your risk of developing osteoporosis, a serious condition in which the bones weaken and are more likely to fracture. At different ages, we will require different levels of calcium in our diets. Children aged 1-3 need 500mg a day, from ages 4-8 that rises to 800mg a day. Older children and teens need 1300mg a day and adults need 1000mg a day. Over the age of 51, people need 1200mg a day and pregnant and nursing others will require 1000mg a day. To better absorb all of this wonderful calcium it is important to have sufficient amounts of Vitamin D in our diet too.
Another reason calcium is essential for oral health is that Not getting enough can raise your risk for periodontal (gum) disease. In studies comparing calcium intake and gum disease, the healthiest teeth were seen in people who consumed more than 800mg a day. Those who consumed less than 500mg were 54 times more likely to develop gum disease.
Sources of calcium can be found in leafy green vegetables and of course in dairy products. Foods such as milk, cheese and yoghurt are full of calcium. Other sources include calcium-fortified juices, breakfast cereal and canned sardines.
Maintaining your calcium intake is important as we get older as bone mass and skeletons do become more fragile as we age. Getting plenty of calcium, incorporating weight-bearing exercise into your routine and cutting back on alcohol will also help to keep your bones and teeth in tip top condition.