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6 Things You Didn’t Know Increase Your Chance Of Having Tooth Decay

6 Things You Didn’t Know Increase Your Chance Of Having Tooth Decay

Growing up, we learned a lot of important lessons on how to maintain proper oral hygiene to prevent tooth decay. These lessons taught us that failing to brush our teeth regularly, eating high sugary foods, and other carbohydrates can cause tooth decay. However, most of us failed to address the most obvious causes of tooth decay.

Tooth Decay Comes From The Destruction Of Tooth Enamel

To understand the cause of tooth decay, you have to understand that it is the result of the destruction of our teeth enamel, which is the hard, outer layer of our teeth. It is a chain reaction that starts when we eat or drink foods that contain bacteria that use sugars in the food to make acids. Later, these acids can create cavities in our teeth. And if left untreated, those teeth might become severely decayed.

Below are six factors that increase your chances of having tooth decay that you probably didn’t know already.

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1. Dry Mouth

When the mouth lacks saliva, harmful germs such as bacteria, viruses, and fungi will stay in it and cause cavities. However, having a dry mouth should not make you anxious. There are self-care steps that can help improve a dry mouth, such as chewing sugarless gum, drinking plenty of water, and avoiding cigarettes and alcohol.

2. Vigorous Teeth Brushing

More often than not, most of us have the habit of brushing our teeth vigorously with the thought that the harder you do it, the cleaner your teeth will be. Well, this is a very poor habit which you should stop immediately. Toothbrush misuse has a high chance of causing damage to your teeth, according to a published dental study by Dr. Thomas Abrahamsen in the International Dental Journal.

Often, patients who have over-brushed their teeth complain of sensitive teeth. What you should do is simply brushing gently by applying less pressure with circular strokes on gums and invest in a soft-bristled toothbrush.

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3. Not Getting Enough Fluoride

Did you know one of the benefits of drinking water is making your teeth enamel stronger due to the fluoride content it has? Fluoride helps to prevent your teeth from decay by making them more resistant to acid attacks from sugars and plaque bacteria in the mouth.

When you use fluoride regularly, it can reduce the number of cavities you might develop in your teeth. Therefore, according to Fluoride Information Network, drinking tap water with fluoride treatment and using fluoride toothpaste can reduce tooth decay.

4. High Acidic Foods Intake

At times, you might have felt tooth sensitivity, especially when you eat or drink something that is very cold or hot. Sensitivity is typically due to exposing the teeth to high levels of acidic foods. Tooth sensitivity is a common condition that results from the irritation of nerves in your teeth. Eating highly acidic foods leads to enamel damage, which exposes the inner layer of your teeth, exposing the nerve center, and leading to painful tooth sensitivity.

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What you should do is avoid eating high acidic foods, such as lemons, tomatoes, pickles, alcohol, coffee, etc. Instead, you should eat foods that are low in acid, such as bananas, lean meat, avocados, whole grains, broccoli, eggs, vegetables etc.

5. Drinking Alcohol At Night

During the night when you sleep, there is less saliva production, since your mouth is inactive. This state will make it more difficult for your mouth to wash away acids and bacteria naturally. The result, as you may already know, is that chances of tooth decay are likely to increase when you drink alcohol at night.

Therefore, you should avoid drinking alcohol at night. If you are unable to control yourself and limit your nightly alcohol intake, drink alcohol moderately as you sip water at the same time.

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6. Dairy Products

Eating natural dairy products is usually not harmful to your teeth because it contains calcium that make our teeth strong. However, when we combine dairy products mixed with other foods that have high sugar levels and other carbohydrates, which feed the bacteria in your mouth, then there are higher chances of developing tooth decay. Eat dairy separately and avoid eating unhealthy forms of dairy, like ice cream and frozen yogurt for example.

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Alex Johnson

Professional Writer and Blogger

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Last Updated on August 12, 2019

12 Best Foods That Improve Memory and Brain Health

12 Best Foods That Improve Memory and Brain Health

Nutrition plays a vital role in brain function and staying sharp into the golden years. Personally, my husband is going through medical school, which is like a daily mental marathon. Like any good wife, I am always looking for things that will boost his memory fortitude so he does his best in school.

But you don’t have to be a med student to appreciate better brainiac brilliance. If you combine certain foods with good hydration, proper sleep and exercise, you may just rival Einstein and have a great memory in no time.

I’m going to reveal the list of foods coming out of the kitchen that can improve your memory and make you smarter.

Here are 12 best brain foods that improve memory and brain power:

1. Nuts

The American Journal of Epidemiology published a study linking higher intakes of vitamin E with the prevention on cognitive decline.[1]

Nuts like walnuts and almonds (along with other great foods like avocados) are a great source of vitamin E.

Cashews and sunflower seeds also contain an amino acid that reduces stress by boosting serotonin levels.

Walnuts even resemble the brain, just in case you forget the correlation, and are a great source of omega 3 fatty acids, which also improve your mental magnitude.

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2. Blueberries

Shown in studies at Tuffs University to benefit both short-term memory and coordination, blueberries pack quite a punch in a tiny blue package.[2]

When compared to other fruits and veggies, blueberries were found to have the highest amount of antioxidants (especially flavonoids), but strawberries, raspberries, and blackberries are also full of brain benefits.

3. Tomatoes

Tomatoes are packed full of the antioxidant lycopene, which has shown to help protect against free-radical damage most notably seen in dementia patients.

4. Broccoli

While all green veggies are important and rich in antioxidants and vitamin C, broccoli is a superfood even among these healthy choices.

Since your brain uses so much fuel (it’s only 3% of your body weight but uses up to 17% of your energy), it is more vulnerable to free-radical damage and antioxidants help eliminate this threat.

Broccoli is packed full of antioxidants, is well-known as a powerful cancer fighter and is also full of vitamin K, which is known to enhance cognitive function.

5. Foods Rich in Essential Fatty Acids

Your brain is the fattest organ (not counting the skin) in the human body, and is composed of 60% fat. That means that your brain needs essential fatty acids like DHA and EPA to repair and build up synapses associated with memory.

The body does not naturally produce essential fatty acids so we must get them in our diet.

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Eggs, flax, and oily fish like salmon, sardines, mackerel and herring are great natural sources of these powerful fatty acids. Eggs also contain choline, which is a necessary building block for the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, to help you recall information and concentrate.

6. Soy

Soy, along with many other whole foods mentioned here, are full of proteins that trigger neurotransmitters associated with memory.

Soy protein isolate is a concentrated form of the protein that can be found in powder, liquid, or supplement form.

Soy is valuable for improving memory and mental flexibility, so pour soy milk over your cereal and enjoy the benefits.

7. Dark Chocolate

When it comes to chocolate, the darker the better. Try to aim for at least 70% cocoa. This yummy desert is rich in flavanol antioxidants which increase blood flow to the brain and shield brain cells from aging.

Take a look at this article if you want to know more benefits of dark chocolate: 15 Surprising and Science-Backed Health Effects of Dark Chocolate

8. Foods Rich in Vitamins: B vitamins, Folic Acid, Iron

Some great foods to obtain brain-boosting B vitamins, folic acid and iron are kale, chard, spinach and other dark leafy greens.

B6, B12 and folic acid can reduce levels of homocysteine in the blood. Homocysteine increases are found in patients with cognitive impairment like Alzheimer’s, and high risk of stroke.

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Studies showed when a group of elderly patients with mild cognitive impairment were given high doses of B6, B12, and folic acid, there was significant reduction in brain shrinkage compared to a similar placebo group.[3]

Other sources of B vitamins are liver, eggs, soybeans, lentils and green beans. Iron also helps accelerate brain function by carrying oxygen. If your brain doesn’t get enough oxygen, it can slow down and people can experience difficulty concentrating, diminished intellect, and a shorter attention span.

To get more iron in your diet, eat lean meats, beans, and iron-fortified cereals. Vitamin C helps in iron absorption, so don’t forget the fruits!

9. Foods Rich in Zinc

Zinc has constantly demonstrated its importance as a powerful nutrient in memory building and thinking. This mineral regulates communications between neurons and the hippocampus.

Zinc is deposited within nerve cells, with the highest concentrations found in the hippocampus, the part of the brain responsible for higher learning function and memory.

Some great sources of zinc are pumpkin seeds, liver, nuts, and peas.

10. Gingko Biloba

This herb has been utilized for centuries in eastern culture and is best known for its memory boosting brawn.

It can increase blood flow in the brain by dilating vessels, increasing oxygen supply and removing free radicals.

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However, don’t expect results overnight: this may take a few weeks to build up in your system before you see improvements.

11. Green and Black Tea

Studies have shown that both green and black tea prevent the breakdown of acetylcholine—a key chemical involved in memory and lacking in Alzheimer’s patients.

Both teas appear to have the same affect on Alzheimer’s disease as many drugs utilized to combat the illness, but green tea wins out as its affects last a full week versus black tea which only lasts the day.

Find out more about green tea here: 11 Health Benefits of Green Tea (+ How to Drink It for Maximum Benefits)

12. Sage and Rosemary

Both of these powerful herbs have been shown to increase memory and mental clarity, and alleviate mental fatigue in studies.

Try to enjoy these savory herbs in your favorite dishes.

When it comes to mental magnitude, eating smart can really make you smarter. Try to implement more of these readily available nutrients and see just how brainy you can be!

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Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

Reference

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