Most folks know the basics of good oral health: brushing and flossing, avoiding bad habits like smoking or teeth grinding, and regular check-ups and cleanings with your dentist. While these are all important, there are other, less well-known elements which play a role in the health of our teeth and gums, and in turn, impact our overall health and well-being. One of those is maintaining a good pH balance and increasing the alkalinity of your mouth.
If you have no idea what pH or alkalinity is or why it matters, you are not alone. But once you understand how these factors affect your health, you’ll want to take some simple steps to keep things in balance.
What is Alkalinity?
Alkalinity describes the ability of water to neutralize acidic substances. Acids in the mouth are what cause tooth enamel to wear away, eventually leading to tooth decay and cavities. Acids are sometimes introduced into the mouth through the foods we eat, like sugary snacks and soda. Or, acid may naturally occur at higher-than-average levels in the saliva.
The pH level refers to the level of acid in your mouth. On one side of the pH spectrum is acidity, while the other end is alkalinity. You want to stay out of the acidic side as that raises the likelihood of damage to your teeth. You want to promote alkalinity and raise the pH level of your mouth, reducing acidic buildup, and protecting your teeth from decay. Conversely, making lifestyle choices that promote acidity in the mouth can have a significantly detrimental effect on long term oral health.
Ways to Increase Alkalinity and Balance Your pH Level
To combat acidity in the mouth, patients can engage in lifestyle habits that naturally increase the body’s alkalinity. This can transform your mouth into a gentler environment in which teeth, gums, and soft tissues can flourish, rather than suffer breakage and decay.
Consider taking the following simple steps to balance your pH levels:
- Limit sugar intake
- Moderate coffee consumption
- Stop smoking or using any nicotine products
- Eat more root vegetables like radishes, beets, carrots, turnips, horseradish, and rutabaga
- Eat more leafy greens like kale, Swiss chard, turnip greens, and spinach.
- Be generous with garlic when cooking
- Add lemons to your water
Assure A Smile: Miami Holistic Dentistry
At Assure A Smile, we partner with our patients to help them develop healthy, natural, and effective oral hygiene habits as part of an overall wellness strategy and holistic healthcare approach. To learn more about the importance of holistic healthcare and how to develop healthier habits for a better you, please contact us online or call us at 305-274-0047.