Vitamin D Deficiency and Periodontal Disease

How Vitamin D Deficiency Affects the Health of Your Teeth

Vitamin D is essential in helping your teeth remain anchored into their sockets.  Research has shown that people with Vitamin D deficiency are more likely to develop periodontal disease.  Periodontal disease is the weakening of the supporting tissues that anchor the teeth. This includes gums, bone, and connective tissue. Untreated, gum disease leads to redness, bleeding, and inflammation of the gums and eventually leads to tooth loss.

So what role does Vitamin D play in the prevention of periodontal disease?

Our bodies host genes that are responsible for the expression of periodontal disease. Vitamin D regulates these genes. Vitamin D acts as a controller of genes in almost every cell. When Vitamin D levels are too low, the genes responsible for a number of problems, such as periodontal disease, get switched on and allow the disease to develop.

Vitamin D has not been tested as a treatment for periodontal disease. However, sustaining proper Vitamin D levels may help prevent periodontal disease. While it does not treat periodontal disease, Vitamin D may reduce gingivitis because of its anti-inflammatory effects.

How does Vitamin D help strengthen your teeth?

People correlate strong bones and teeth with calcium. But what many people fail to realize is that Vitamin D regulates the calcium throughout our bodies.  The calcium in our teeth and bones moves constantly.  Vitamin D determines where the calcium goes.  If your calcium levels are too low, then the calcium goes into your blood stream.  If you have adequate or high levels of calcium, the Vitamin D will tell your body to move the calcium into the teeth and bones.  However, if you have a Vitamin D Deficiency, no amount of calcium will go into the bones, thus causing major weakness to your bones and teeth. This result ultimately leads to osteoporosis, periodontal disease, and weak teeth!

What is the best way to obtain proper Vitamin D levels?

Research shows that the best way to obtain Vitamin D is from 10 to 15 minutes of sunshine at least two times a week on the face, arms, hands, or back. People who live in states with minimal sunshine should eat eggs, milk, sardines, and tuna. You can also take Vitamin D supplements, but be sure to consult your physician prior to taking any supplement or medication.

If you are concerned that you have periodontal disease and Vitamin D Deficiency may be a factor, call me, Dr. James Stewart, in Livonia, MI, at (734)425-4400, to schedule a consultation. My team and I want to assist you in maintaining a sunny smile!