We bet you’ve heard of gluten-free diets. If you don’t know much about them, gluten is the protein in some grains that hold food together. In most cases, a gluten-free diet is often equated with a healthier lifestyle. But did you know that gluten can significantly affect your oral health as well?
It’s said that people who have gluten intolerance are more likely to have oral health issues. These may include erosion of the enamel, excessive cavities, inflamed or irritated gums, and discolored teeth. We’ll learn more about how gluten intolerance affects these issues in the following section.
Here’s what you should know about the impact of gluten on your oral health:
Gluten in a Nutshell
So what is gluten, exactly? Simply put, gluten is a group of proteins, called prolamins and glutelins, which occur with starch in the endosperm of various cereal grains. It can be found in everyday foods such as wheat, barley, and rye. Gluten is also a common ingredient in cereals, pasta, bread, salad dressing, food coloring, and even beer.
The Impact of Gluten on Your Health
Gluten acts as a bonding agent to help food keep its shape. It is indigestible, which means it can’t be broken down by the body. It is then absorbed by the intestines instead. This is why gluten irritates the intestinal lining and triggers the immune system. Gluten can damage the small intestine and prevent the body from absorbing enough nutrients, leading to malnutrition.
The most severe form of gluten intolerance is a condition known as celiac disease. It is said that one out of every 100 people in the world has celiac disease. If left untreated, it can cause one to develop serious health issues like Type I diabetes, various neurological disorders, and intestinal cancer.
The Impact of Gluten on Your Teeth
It’s essential to consider the effect of gluten on your teeth. If you have a gluten intolerance, consuming it can severely affect your teeth. Why? People with celiac disease can experience erosion of tooth enamel. This is because their bodies can’t absorb the vitamins and minerals their teeth need to fight the ravages of the disease. Gluten can also prevent the body from producing the Vitamin K needed for healthy bones. As a result, people with celiac disease may have oral health issues. These may include excessive cavities, inflamed or irritated gums, and discolored teeth, among others.
How Dentists Can Help
If you have been diagnosed with gluten intolerance, what then are you supposed to do? It’s essential to have an excellent oral health care routine. This means that you have to brush and floss your teeth regularly. You should also visit your dentist or have regular check-ups and professional cleaning sessions. You would also do well to go on a gluten-free diet.
// Wrapped Up
Having gluten intolerance can be quite detrimental to your oral and overall health. Maintaining a gluten-free diet is what’s best for you. Ultimately, regardless of whether you're gluten-free or not, you still need to take good care of your oral health. You should also visit your dentist on a regular basis. What are you waiting for? Schedule your next appointment today!
If you’re looking for a local dentist to help you with your dental health, get in touch with us today for a free consultation.