Folic Acid Fights Gingivitis

The country recently celebrated National Folic Acid Awareness Week, which is observed the second week of January annually.21872038211_6067a1d6cd_z

What the heck does folic acid have to do with orthodontics? A lot. Read on!

Patients undergoing orthodontic treatment are more likely to get gingivitis if they don’t practice good oral hygiene. Navigating around brackets and arch wires can take some getting used to, and your gums will become red, swollen and tender if you don’t brush and floss well.

Luckily for you, we provide each of our patients with all the tools needed to maintain good oral hygiene throughout treatment. We give patients oral care kits that include items such as soft picks, proxy brushes and dental floss threaders.

In addition to using these helpful tools, incorporating folic acid into your diet can help prevent gingivitis, the first stage of periodontal disease, because folic acid fights gingivitis. But first, you should clear it with your family physician before taking this or any supplement.

The health of your teeth and gums depends heavily on good nutrition. The right diet can prevent gum disease from developing, and some nutritional supplements can stop it in its tracks. That’s where folic acid comes in.

“Double blind studies have shown that folic acid can significantly reduce gum inflammation,” according to the Institute for Optimum Nutrition. This supplement is particularly important for pregnant women, as well as those who take contraceptive pills.

Other studies have identified Co Q10, folic acid and zinc as beneficial to fighting gum disease when applied topically. Folic acid can reduce gum inflammation and help them become more resilient to dental plaque and anaerobic bacteria, two of the primary culprits responsible for tooth decay, gum disease and bad breath. Folic acid helps to reduce gum bleeding, which is one of the most common signs of gum disease.

Obviously, it takes more than folic acid to keep gingivitis at bay. Generally speaking, the same diet that promotes healthy gums also promotes whole-body health, according to the Institute for Optimum Nutrition. Focus on nutrient-rich and fresh, natural foods, whole grains, vegetables, fruit, fish, beans and seeds.

Limit the amount of sugar, refined carbohydrates, salt and alcohol. Look for foods that are high in bioflavonoids, such as blue-black fruits, onions, citrus pith and hawthorn berries, because these compounds help maintain healthy collagen structure. A high-fiber diet also may protect against gum disease by promoting saliva production, which washes away harmful bacteria.

Feel free to ask us if you would like more information on how to keep your gums and teeth healthy by eating a healthy diet. We want to help you do all you can to keep your smile beautiful!