Photo Courtesy: Giulia Marotta
They’ve been telling us for years the untruth that we can’t rebuild the enamel on our teeth. All this while, whitening toothpastes and products are shoved at us, containing agents known to eat away at that precious enamel. And we have fluoride too, which studies have shown causes the brittling of teeth and bones, and yet we still add it to our toothpastes, and even our water.
Our teeth are getting softer, more sensitive, and expensive dental visits a luxury, till we cry out “Isn’t there a better way?” Of course there is.
Foods that destroy tooth enamel
First, you’ve got to watch your diet. Acids, such as citric and phosphoric acids, eat away the enamel. They are present in certain foods, in lemon and other fruit-based drinks, and especially in carbonated sodas. There have been studies that dropped a metal screw into a glass of the popular ‘Classic’ soda, and the acids stripped the metal right off the screw. Imagine what it is doing to your only set of teeth. One recommendation is to sip these through a straw so that they have less contact with teeth.
Strengthening tooth enamel
Adding other foods that are good for strengthening tooth enamel are easy to accomplish, like celery and carrots which produce saliva that kills bacteria, and cleans between the teeth. Cheese preserves and rebuilds tooth enamel. Sesame seeds can slough off the plaque on teeth and can help rebuild enamel too. Some antibacterials that will help keep the mouth healthy include green tea, onions and shiitake mushrooms. Don’t forget important Vitamin C, essential for overall mouth health. Oh, and drink lots of water.
Herbs that can help rebuild enamel
There are many herbs that can help rebuild enamel as well. Horsetail, specifically Equisetum arvense, is often used for osteoporosis to improve bone density. But it can also help in cases of enamel loss and brittle nails too. It contains calcium, magnesium, potassium and silica, a mineral essential in the development and strengthening of healthy bones and teeth.
Silica helps calcium and other minerals to be absorbed by bones better, as well as speed bone healing and improve joint elasticity. It can be taken as a supplement, or mixed into toothpaste.
There has been some praise for alfalfa, a mineral rich herb that can also help calcium and other bone essential minerals absorb more easily. And it has been shown to strengthen and rebuild tooth enamel, though it seems to work better when the bowel is clean. Used as a paste or taken internally, it can also aid the jaw bones and teeth in repairing themselves. White oak bark can be used similarly as well.
A home remedy called ‘oil pulling’
There’s a newer home remedy called oil pulling, and among its benefits are strengthening tooth enamel and erosion prevention. It involves a teaspoon of sunflower or sesame oil that gets swirled around the mouth every morning, and then spit out after a few minutes. Careful not to swallow!
Most important, however, is to find out the facts and truth about your teeth.