If you're like most people, when you notice bad breath, you might reach for the toothbrush or a bottle of mouthwash. While nothing can replace regular dental care (brushing, flossing, etc.), more and more people are finding that they can improve oral health – and that includes bad breath! – through the use of vitamins. That's right, certain vitamins and minerals can be just as important as toothpaste and regular dental cleanings when it comes to your oral health. Let's take a closer look at the ones you need to know about…
Vitamins & Minerals for Oral Health
- Vitamins B2 and B12: Let's cut straight to the chase. Bad breath is a major concern for many people. Vitamins B2 and B12 can help combat bad breath. They're readily available in beans, many green vegetables, and meats like poultry and beef. Not only do they help with bad breath, but these vitamins can help fight cavities! Pick up a bottle of Vitamin B-2 or Vitamin B-12.
- Calcium: Of course, calcium is an obvious champion of oral health, right? We all know calcium is used to help build strong bones and teeth. So, make sure you're getting enough in your diet. Calcium is available in many natural and fortified foods, including salmon, leafy greens, and dairy products. Alternatively, you can ensure you're getting enough calcium with a calcium supplement.
- Vitamin D: Whenever calcium's mentioned, we need to quickly follow up with a note about vitamin D! Vitamin D plays an essential role in helping the body absorb calcium. While you can get vitamin D from sunlight, fortified foods, and natural foods (like fatty fish), you can also go straight to a vitamin D supplement (which may be especially helpful as the days get shorter). Also, it's worth pointing out that there are calcium/vitamin D combination supplements available.
- Vitamin A: Dry mouth? Try supplementing your diet with Vitamin A, which is known to help prevent dry mouth by nourishing mucous membranes.
- Vitamin C: You know that vitamin C is good for your immune system, but did you also know that it's great for your gums? Vitamin C helps the body develop new blood vessels. Healthy blood vessels can support healthy gums – one of many reasons to ensure vitamin C is a part of your daily diet. Get it here.
- Phosphorus: Phosphorus probably isn't a mineral you think about on a daily (or even monthly!) basis, but it plays an important role in supporting calcium. You can obtain phosphorus from whole grains and foods high in protein. If you need a supplement, try a calcium phosphorus combination like this one.