Do you or your kids have a lot of cavities? I have heard of so many kids who have 6, 7, 8 cavities at a time! The parents and dentists that I have talked to don’t seem to be too worried about cavities, other than the cost associated with getting them filled. We often assume that they are part of growing up and that some of us have softer teeth than others. This may be the case and I agree that we shouldn’t panic about things unless it is necessary, but I did get to thinking, why are these kids having cavities and is there anything that I can do to decrease my kids’ chance of having cavities. I would prefer if our dental cleanings are the kind that you are in and out with clean, white, healthy teeth and you hear… see you in 6 months at your next cleaning.
So I decided to dig a little deeper here and in fact there is a ton of information supporting the fact that you can support your body for tooth health, that you may be able to reverse tooth decay, and that in fact tooth decay or ill-health may actually be representing a much great problem including nutrient deficiency. The realization that we could heal our teeth, or at least have more of an impact on our tooth health, beyond brushing ferociously and not eating large quantities of refined white sugar, was a fascinating realization.
It turns out that many people regard tooth health as a representation of health in other parts of our body. Apparently certain teeth have relationship with certain organs in our body and the health status in one relates to the health status in the other. I found this so interesting! Who would have thought that it goes beyond enamel, fluoride, and flossing! Dr. Weston Price knew about this a while ago when he wrote his book Nutrition and Physical Degeneration. Dr. Price traveled around the world and studied indigenous groups of people who were isolated enough that they still ate their traditional diets. He studied their diets, food preparation, teeth and dental structure. He came to a number of conclusions, one of which being that processed foods were a major driver of tooth decay and illness. He found that when people ate locally sourced foods and used traditional food preparation techniques, people would have what they needed to have healthy bodies. Unfortunately, this wasn’t something that I thought to read before I had kids. However once I read it, I was amazed and convinced about how important nutrition is to our oral health and how much our oral health can tell us about how we are doing.
After reading Dr. Price’s work and realizing that there was a lot that I could change to have a healthier mouth and body going forward, I also wanted to know about what I could do to manage damage that I may have already done. This is where I came across the book Cure Tooth Decay by Ramiel Nagel. Dr. Nagel gives his thoughts on how you can remineralize your teeth using good food since he says tooth decay is caused by nutrient deficiency. His book is fascinating and gives direct feedback and adaptations that we can make now to improve our tooth health. For more information from Dr. Nagel, you might enjoy this interview done with him about his book by The Nourished Kitchen. His book seems to agree that our processed foods are not nutritious for our bodies and that when we adopt a more nutrition diet, we can improve our oral health.
So I hope this inspires you to think of cavities and other oral issues as signs. Signs that you may want to look deeper and figure out why your body is not feeling supported enough to be well.