It’s happened again – you’re flossing and you still have bleeding gums. Or you’ve gone to the dentist and found out you have another cavity. But you take great care of your gums and teeth. How can this be?
Maybe you regularly brush and floss. Probably you even consider what you eat and drink. to give your pearly whites the best chance possible at remaining healthy throughout your life.
And yet you experience persistent precautionary signs of gum disease.
Your dentist even tells you, “you really should to floss more,” and you’re at a loss for what’s actually going wrong.
Here’s where I wished dentists sometimes asked more questions. When I see patients with bleeding gums I usually ask them about their allergies. I ask if they breath from their mouths or regularly experience blocked sinuses.
And why’s that?
If you have bleeding, sensitive, swollen gums, and allergies that aren’t caused by poor oral health. It could be caused by a vitamin deficiency.
I’ve noticed that many patients with allergies, who mouth breathe, and regularly experience blocked sinuses. Are the same patients that have inflamed red bleeding gums, which can progress to gum disease. And vitamin D deficiency is often at the root cause of it all.
Why Brushing and Flossing Aren’t Always the Issue
First of all, It’s fascinating to me, that in the dental realm especially, we barely try to find an underlying cause to conditions such as gum disease.
Shouldn’t the rising rates of gum disease raise concerns and questions? Have we gotten better at taking care of our teeth and yet periodontal disease is at an all-time high? Doesn’t this indicate that something else is to blame?
Maybe it’s not so much oral hygiene but instead a lack of the right nutrients. More than ever, we are learning about varying allergies and intolerances that cause chronic inflammatory conditions, such as bleeding and swollen gums.
Since bleeding gums and allergies, by definition, are chronic inflammation doesn’t it make sense that the two could be related. And if we find the solution to one issue could it positively impact the other?
The vitamin I believe to be responsible for many of my patient’s allergies and bleeding gums is vitamin D.
Let’s take a look at five considerations that show how vitamin D deficiency could be causing allergies and gum disease.
5 Ways Vitamin D Impacts Allergies And Your Gum Disease
1. Food allergies cause oral microbiome imbalance and vice versa. There’s a cyclical impact of the gut and oral microbiome balance because although they are different in composition, they are connected.
And food allergies are capable of throwing one or both of these out of whack. Because gut and oral microbiome imbalances often have symptoms that present at the same time as gum disease, it’s likely that the root cause could be the same issue.
Those that suffer from food allergies often experience and reduction in symptoms after they incorporate vitamin D supplements – this often means a reduction in inflammation as a whole in the gut and gums.
2. People with good oral hygiene still get gum disease. If you are experiencing allergies, gum disease, and have good oral hygiene it could be a nutrient deficiency that is causing your symptoms such as bleeding gums.
This could explain the thousands of people who still get gum disease even when they have good dental hygiene habits. It would also help explain why levels of gum disease are on the rise even when we tend to care for our teeth better than ever.
3. Studies have found higher levels of gum disease in people with more food sensitivities. This suggests that food intolerance, such as gluten, and gum disease could share a common cause, such as low vitamin D levels.
4. Allergies cause inflammation and irritated tissues – a major symptom of gum disease. Inflammatory reactions within the body are the primary symptom of both allergies and gum disease.
5. Leaky gut syndrome (caused by inflammatory foods or intolerances) leads to higher risk of gum disease. Could it be that poor nutrient absorption is related to both allergies and gum disease?
It’s a compelling case that food allergies and gum disease could share a common cause. The good news is that certain nutrients have the potential to improve both your allergies and your swollen and bleeding gums.
How Vitamin D Can Help
You know what vitamin can improve allergies, balance your gut, reduce inflammation, and boost your immune system?
You guessed it. Vitamin D.
Vitamin D has shown to be effective in positively impacting the different areas of your health thought to influence gum disease.
Furthermore, let’s look at how vitamin D helps gut microbiome balance, calms inflammation, and boosts your immune system, and alleviates allergy symptoms.
Gut balance – Vitamin D is vital to maintaining a healthy gut flora. Studies have shown that vitamin D supplementation not only improves gut balance but reduces leaky gut syndrome, alleviates irritable bowel syndrome, and improves nutrient absorption. Having health gut flora positively impacts your oral microbiome, reduces inflammation, and improves immune system health.
Immune system health – Vitamin D actually helps the immune system fight off infections and disease. People with autoimmune diseases are usually vitamin D deficient and often suffer from gum disease. Supplementing vitamin D has shown to help immune system health.
Allergy impact – Studies have shown that vitamin D supplementation in the first years of life can reduce the risk of allergies and asthma. In these same studies, vitamin D supplementation reduced food hypersensitivity. Vitamin D is thought to help those with allergies due to its anti-inflammatory and positive immune system impact.
I want to reiterate that vitamin D and another important vitamin, vitamin A, work together to influence your risk for allergies. Be sure you’re getting enough to reduce your overall impact from allergies altogether.
The Dental Diet: Healing Your Bleeding Gums, Allergies, with Adequate Vitamin D
First of all, the body is a complex system of symbiotic relationships. When one part of the system is thrown off balance it can lead to a cascade of health consequences. Only by considering the body in its entirety can we begin treating the root causes of illnesses, including gum disease.
Therefore, as our diets have become higher in processed foods, simple carbs and sugars, we’ve seen an increase in inflammation, disease, and food sensitivities. Isn’t it time that we start considering these issues as a whole system, instead of putting Band-Aids on symptoms, which ignores the underlying system and ultimately does more harm than good?
Therefore, the Dental Diet focuses on reducing inflammation, maintaining gut and oral microbiome balance, boosting your immune system, and proper nutrient absorption. And at the end of the day The Dental Diet is great for your whole body because it considers the various systems and their intertwining impacts on one another.
Dr. Vimal Thareja completed his BDS from the prestigious Manipal College of Dental Sciences, Manipal. And then his MDS in Orthodontics & Dentofacial Orthopedics from College of Dental Sciences, Rajiv Gandhi University of Health Sciences.
He is working as a Senior Consultant at various hospitals and private dental clinics in Delhi & NCR where he exclusively treats patients with malocclusions and dentofacial deformities. He has over 8 years of experience in Orthodontics & Dentofacial Orthopedics, dealing with various dental and facial aberrations. In Orthodontics, he is routinely practices Straight-wire technique, Lingual Orthodontics, Self-Ligation, Adult Orthodontics, Clear Aligners and temporary anchorage Devices. Dr. Thareja has treated hundreds of patients with irregular teeth and facial problems and given them the gift of a beautiful smile using the latest technology and his vast armamentarium of different systems of braces and devices."<yoastmark
He is a Life Member of Indian Orthodontic Society for over 4 years now, also active academically. He has a teaching experience of over 4 years as Senior Faculty in a Dental College in NCR. Dr. Thareja has also published various research papers in prestigious national and international journals.
Registered with the Delhi State Dental Council, Dr. Thareja also Practices full time at SmileMax Dentistry, Rani Bagh, Pitampura. He also practices general dentistry along with Orthodontics and is known for providing services in Aesthetic Dentistry, Crowns & Bridges. Gums Treatments, Root Canals, Teeth Whitening procedures, Tooth Colored Fillings, Oral Surgery and Dental Implantology.