You will be amazed! What salivation has to do with dental health
Spit or saliva has a decisive influence on our dental health. How and in what form is the subject of this blog. This multifunctional universal liquid has amazing abilities.
It is rightly said that digestion begins in the mouth. Because the amylase contained in the saliva splits starch into sugar that our body can use. And that is just one of the other factors influencing saliva on digestion. But back to our topic of dental health:
The wondrous liquid that enables us to swallow in the first place consists of 99% water. The one percent is made up of minerals such as sodium, calcium, potassium, phosphates, chloride and fluoride - yes, fluoride is also produced by our own body! The proteins contained in the saliva are particularly relevant for the tooth surfaces. They form a kind of protective shield on the tooth surface and on the oral mucosa: "buffer substances" that neutralize sugar or acid. So saliva is like a chemical toothbrush.
Saliva – the body's own oral hygiene
- fights viruses and bacteria
- protects teeth, oral mucosa and gums
- makes swallowing easier
- moistens food and makes it swallowable
- Sugar digestion begins with the enzyme amylase
- supports speaking through its humidifying function
- neutralizes the acids
- supports the remineralization of the teethe
Saliva contains all the minerals that are also found in tooth substance and fulfills three important functions in natural dental hygiene:
PURIFICATION / REMINERALIZATION / REGENERATION
Sufficient salivation reduces the risk of tooth decay because the bacteria have less chance of settling and the acids produced by the bacteria are neutralized.
Saliva also keeps the pH value in the mouth constant and protects the teeth from acid-induced erosion. Because our teeth are not acid-resistant. If the pH value in the oral cavity falls significantly below this level over a longer period of time, the teeth are decalcified and their substance gradually broken down.
However, evolution changes its blueprints and programs in much larger time windows than humans change their habits. Our saliva mixture is not designed for fast food, sugary foods and excess acids and is overwhelmed as a cleaning and buffering medium. Plaque can spread or the excess acids can decalcify and gradually break down the tooth surface. The dental plaque hinders the saliva in one of its other functions, the remineralization, because it encloses the tooth tightly and does not allow access for the minerals contained in the saliva.
The excretions of the bacteria contained in the plaque attack the teeth and gums. This leads to tooth decay and periodontitis, a degenerative disease of the periodontium with long-term devastating effects on dental and oral health. Although saliva has an excellent protective function, it is unfortunately no longer sufficient these days: optimal oral hygiene throughout the day has become essential.
Dry mouth - more than just uncomfortable
Excitement, constant stress and age literally dry the mouth. Diseases such as Sjorgen's syndrome, in which immune cells attack the tear and salivary glands, chronic diseases such as diabetes, chemotherapy or radiotherapy also cause a lack of saliva. Around 4% of the population suffer from particularly dramatic forms of dry mouth, known as xerostomia.
Medications can also cause an underactive salivary gland. Around 80% of the most frequently prescribed drugs belong to this group.
The tendency to dry mouth has two main natural causes:
- Aging: saliva production decreases over the course of life.
- Being a woman: Women tend to produce less saliva. Even less after menopause.
Little saliva endangers dental health and the health of the oral cavity. Inflamed periodontal pockets are comparable to open wounds: If they are not rinsed out sufficiently, germs can even infect other organs. For this reason, good oral hygiene is essential, especially for women.
Tips to stimulate salivation and prevent dry mouth:
- drink enough: preferably water or unsweetened tea
- do not smoke, this will make the saliva viscous
- Rinse the oral cavity with a tablespoon of oil. Provides short-term relief.
- Eat as neutral as possible: avoid hot, sour, spiced and sweet foods
- Discuss with your doctor whether a change of medication would be possible.
- Ask the pharmacy about artificial saliva preparations: sprays or gel.
- Chew unsweetened gum or suck on unsweetened candy.
- Try to brush your teeth after every meal to avoid damage to the hard tooth structure and soft tissues.
- Make sure that the tooth substance is sufficiently remineralized by using fluoride.
- Visit your dentist regularly to prevent tooth decay and damage to the mucous membranes or to detect them early.
Pay attention to consistent oral hygiene and remineralization on the go. I have the small one especially for this SNOW PEARL Travel Kit designed. It fits in almost every handbag. the PEARL SHIELD gel toothpaste Thanks to its patented formula, which allows continuous fluoride release for up to 12 hours, it helps to keep the mineral structure of the tooth surface intact even with reduced salivation.