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    Can You Really Heal Cavities at Home?

    Have you heard of remineralization?

    It’s a big word that describes a small problem–reversing cavities.

    If you’re among the 92% of American adults who have cavities, you might be wondering how to prevent getting more.

    A good oral routine of brushing and flossing, as well as regular cleanings from your dentist, are a great place to start. Still, it’s not enough to stop the process of tooth decay.

    There’s been a lot of talk lately about natural ways to heal cavities. There are even remineralizing toothpastes you can buy or make at home.

    Is this just the latest health craze, or is there something behind it?

    In this post, we’ll discuss remineralization and how it can help to heal cavities.

    What is Remineralization?

    To begin with, what exactly is remineralization?

    Remineralization is our body’s natural process of healing a cavity. In order to remineralize a tooth, your body needs–you guessed it–enough minerals to do the job.

    Unfortunately, our modern diet doesn’t offer enough (or the right kinds of) minerals. But we’ll get to that later.

    When a tooth is remineralized, this doesn’t mean that the missing part actually “grows back.”

    Think about it this way: If you cut off your fingertip, will the tip regrow? No. But, over time, the skin will grow in, closing over the wound and preventing infections. Eventually, the finger will function normally again.

    It’s the same idea with your teeth. A cavity won’t actually “fill in,” but remineralizing will protect the tooth and prevent further decay. This allows the tooth to continue functioning as normal.

    What Causes Tooth Decay and Demineralization?

    If you guessed poor dental hygiene, you’re on the right track.

    Good brushing and flossing habits definitely help in the fight against tooth decay. However, neither of these habits actually help in the remineralization process.

    It’s easy to think of our teeth as hard, solid structures. In reality, though, they’re more like a sponge. All types of matter–including minerals–can move in and out of the tiny holes in our teeth.

    As long as your teeth are gaining minerals faster than losing them, they’ll stay healthy and ward off decay.

    How can you ensure this happens? The secret lies in your diet.

    Our modern diet includes a lot of processed and high-glycemic (sugary) foods. Both of these increase demineralization while, at the same time, damage your teeth’s ability to remineralize.

    So what’s the solution? Here are six steps you can take to help your teeth remineralize.

    1. Limit Sugar Intake

    Your dentists have been telling you this since you were a kid, and they’re right. When starchy or sugary foods are left on your teeth, it becomes a breeding ground for the bacteria that causes cavities.

    To win the fight, reduce your intake of sugary foods and drinks. This includes soda, milk, dried fruit, candies, and baked goods.

    1. Reduce Phytic Acid

    Phytic what? Phytic acid is found in phytates, which you know as grains. These include wheat, barley, rice, beans, lentils, and soy.

    The problem with phytic acid is that it causes mineral deficiencies–the opposite of what you hope to achieve. While some healthy grains are part of a well-balanced diet, try to limit or eliminate grains whenever possible.

    1. Increase Vitamin and Mineral Consumption

    Since we’re talking about diet, make sure you consume enough vitamins and minerals. This will give your teeth the nutrients they need to remineralize and fight decay.

    Make sure to take in an adequate amount of:

    •        Calcium
    •        Magnesium
    •        Vitamin A
    •        Phosphorous
    •        Zinc
    •        Vitamin D
    •        Iron

    A diet high in vitamins and minerals will not only help your teeth, but your overall health as well.

    1. Eat More Teeth-Friendly Foods

    We’ve talked a lot about what you shouldn’t eat. What are some foods that you should eat to help the remineralization process?

    Add more of these teeth-friendly foods to your diet:

    •        Crunchy (raw) fruit and vegetables
    •        Cheese
    •        Eggs
    •        Meat, fish, and poultry
    •        Leafy greens
    •        White or green tea

    Whenever possible, try to eat grass-fed or wild-caught meats and organic produce. Your body will thank you for it!

    1. Address Acid Reflux and Dry Mouth

    Did you know that acid reflux can be more damaging to your teeth than soda? If you frequently suffer from heartburn or reflux, talk to your doctor about ways to get the acid overload under control.

    The same goes for dry mouth. Saliva is crucial to preventing bacterial growth and distributing minerals throughout your mouth. If you suffer from chronic dry mouth, find ways to get the saliva flowing again.

    1. Try a Mineralizing Toothpaste

    There are several remineralizing products on the market, including toothpaste and charcoal powders.

    If you prefer to make your own, here’s a simple DIY recipe:

    •        5 parts calcium powder
    •        2 parts baking soda
    •        3-5 parts coconut oil
    •        3 parts Xylitol powder (to reduce bitterness)
    •        A few drops of your favorite essential oil (mint, cinnamon, or orange)

    Combine the ingredients in a bowl and use like you would a normal toothpaste.

    Final Thoughts on Remineralization

    So, what’s the takeaway? Is remineralization really possible?


    By altering your diet and continuing with a good oral routine, it is possible to heal and prevent cavities–the natural way!

    Researchers Have Discovered That Our DNA Contains the Ability to Regrow Teeth - It Just Needs to be "Switched on"

    Have you ever wondered why humans only have one set of adult teeth?

    After all, many animals have the ability to regrow lost or damaged teeth. So why can’t we do it?

    In this post, we’ll examine the science of growing teeth in different species. We’ll also look at some interesting research studies to see if humans might one day be able to grow additional teeth.

    Why Do We Grow Baby Teeth?

    To start with, why do we grow baby teeth? Wouldn’t it be easier to just have one set of teeth for our entire lives?

    Whether it’d be easier or not, it’s simply not possible.

    It takes around two years for all 20 of our baby teeth to erupt. These baby teeth serve three main purposes:

    •        To help us chew our food
    •        To enable us to speak properly
    •        To preserve space for our adult teeth

    The truth is that a baby’s jaw isn’t large enough to fit a set of adult teeth. The extra space required would make the baby’s head much larger, making childbirth almost impossible.

    And so, our jaws and teeth are designed to give us what we need, when we need it. Our baby teeth serve their purpose during childhood, allowing us to speak and eat while protecting the adult teeth that are forming underneath.

    Then, when our jaws are fully grown and ready for them, our adult teeth emerge.

    That’s great, you may say. But it still leaves us with an unanswered question: Why do we only get one set of adult teeth, and no more?

    Why Do Some Animals Grow Teeth Over and Over (But Humans Don’t)?

    The fact is that we’re born with all the teeth we’re ever going to have. As members of the human race, this is our lot in life.

    Humans, like most mammals, are known as diphyodonts. We’re biologically programmed to only grow two sets of teeth – a baby set and an adult set.

    Other animals, such as sharks and alligators, can regenerate any teeth they lose. Animals with this ability are known as polyphyodonts.

    Most polyphydonts are either fish or reptiles. However, there are three mammal polyphydonts: manatees, kangaroos, and elephants.

    Why do some animals regrow teeth while others can’t?

    Interestingly, researchers at the University of Southern California found that human DNA contains the ability to regenerate and regrow lost limbs or teeth. This means – in theory – that we should be able to do so.

    So what’s the catch? This amazing ability is “turned off” in our DNA.

    Is It Possible that Humans COULD Grow a Third Set of Teeth?

    Here’s the million-dollar question researchers are currently working on:

    Could it ever be possible to “turn on” our DNA’s ability to regrow teeth?

    Think of the ways this could improve our quality of life! There’d be no need for dentures, crowns, or implants. If we lost a tooth or had it removed, we could just sit back and wait for a healthy new one to take its place.

    This is exactly what researchers are hoping to achieve.

    While scientists at USC are examining our DNA, researchers at Harvard are experimenting with lasers and stem cells. Since stem cells have the ability to become any type of tissue, researchers are seeking a way to make those cells repair (or even replace) damaged teeth.

    In one study, scientists used lasers to activate stem cells in rats and human dental tissue. Successful results were recently published in the Science Translational Medicine journal.

    Laser treatment is ideal because it’s minimally invasive and only needs to be used in a small area.

    While early test results are positive, don’t get too excited just yet. This type of research is still in its infancy, and it will be many years before such techniques are available to the public.


    So, is it possible for humans to grow a third set of teeth?

    One day, it very well may be.

    For now, though, your best option is to take care of the original set of teeth nature gave you. Brush and floss daily, and schedule regular cleanings with your dentist.

    That way, you can preserve your natural teeth for decades to come.

    7 Reasons Your Breath Stinks That Have Nothing To Do With Your Tooth Brushing Habits


    Are you self-conscious about the way your breath smells?

    Do you find yourself constantly reaching for gum, mints, or mouthwash?

    Do you feel embarrassed or even anxious about your bad breath?

    If so, you’re not alone. One study estimates that 60 million Americans suffer from chronic halitosis or bad breath.

    While some causes of bad breath are obvious, other reasons may surprise you. In this post, we’ll reveal 7 possible reasons for your bad breath.


    1. Dehydration

    According to the Mayo Clinic, dehydration is one of the most common causes of bad breath.

    When you don’t drink enough water, food and associated bacteria stay in your mouth longer. The longer it remains in your mouth, the more the bacteria breeds (and the worse your breath becomes).

    A related condition is dry mouth, or xerostomia. This results from decreased saliva production. It’s natural during sleep, although the symptoms are worse if you sleep with your mouth open. Some medications and medical conditions also contribute to dry mouth.

    Fortunately, dehydration and dry mouth have a simple solution: Drink more water! Plain water or water with lemon is best to rehydrate your thirsty body. Sugar-free candies or gum also help to stimulate saliva production.


    1. Poor Oral Hygiene

     If you think you might have bad breath, often the first thing you think to do is to brush your teeth. But good oral hygiene goes beyond cleaning your teeth. 

    Your tongue can also trap bacteria that cause halitosis, so be sure to brush your tongue daily. The same goes for the roof of your mouth. Point your toothbrush bristles up and give the roof of your mouth a good scrub as well. If you wear dentures, braces, or other apparatus, make sure to properly clean them every day.

    The cleaner you keep your mouth, the less likely you are to develop bad breath.


    1. Certain Foods

    Any food that lingers in your mouth can breed bacteria and cause bad breath.

    Certain strong-smelling foods, though, are notorious for causing bad breath. These include:

    •        Garlic
    •        Onions
    •        Horseradish
    •        Curry spices
    •        Dairy products
    •        Coffee
    •        Canned tuna
    •        Cheese

    As you digest these foods, they enter your bloodstream and lungs and eventually affect your breath. If you’re struggling with chronic halitosis, you may want to limit or eliminate these foods from your diet.


    1. Tobacco Products

    In case you don’t have enough reasons to quit smoking, here’s one more. Cigarettes and other tobacco products are a major contributor to bad breath.

    The smell of a recently smoked cigarette lingers in the lungs for hours, producing a stale scent known as “smoker’s breath.”

    Nicotine and tar from the cigarette also remain in the mouth, coating your teeth, gums, tongue, and cheeks. This leads to a host of other problems, from annoyances like dry mouth to serious diseases like cancer.

    Smoking is a tough habit to break, but the results are worth it. Your body (and your breath) will thank you for your efforts.


    1. Medications

    Certain medications can alter your body’s chemistry and lead to bad breath.

    Here’s a list of the seven most popular medications that may cause bad breath:

    •        Prilosec
    •        Prozac
    •        Zoloft
    •        Claritin
    •        Paxil
    •        Norvasc
    •        Vasotec

    If you’ve been taking one of these medications for a while, you may notice common side effects like dry mouth, altered taste, or bad breath.

    Changing your medication (if possible) could reduce or eliminate your symptoms. Check with your doctor before making any changes.


    1. Stomach Ulcer

    When we think of ulcers, bad breath probably isn’t the first symptom that comes to mind.

    But along with heartburn and stomach pain, another common symptom of an ulcer is bad breath. The culprit is H. pylori, the bacteria that causes the ulcer.

    When it breeds rapidly, your stomach isn’t the only part of your body affected. H. pylori is notorious for causing sour, acidic breath.

    If you suspect your bad breath might be linked to an ulcer or another stomach condition, speak with your doctor.


    1. Other Illnesses

    In most cases, bad breath can be explained by one of the causes described above.

    If you’ve done everything you can to battle bad breath with no results, it might be time to take a closer look at your health. Chronic halitosis could be a sign of a serious underlying condition.

    The type of gases in your breath reveal a lot about what’s happening inside your body. Excessive methylamine, for example, could signal kidney or liver disease. Too much acetone might be a sign of diabetes. Doctors can even diagnose asthma by the amount of nitric oxide in your breath!

    Of course, you can’t make any of these diagnoses on your own. Schedule an appointment for a more sensitive breath test with your family doctor.


    Human Teeth No Longer Fit in the Human Jaw - The Reason May Have to do With Modern Farming

    Have you ever stopped to consider how incredible your teeth are?

    Think about it. How many thousands of meals have you chewed with the same set of teeth? We use our teeth break down chewy or crunchy food, but how often do we break a tooth?

    Our teeth may be strong, but that doesn’t mean they’re problem-free. In fact, dental crowding and malocclusion (misalignment) affects one in five people.

    Did you once have (or do you still have) impacted wisdom teeth? Are your front teeth crowded or crooked? Do your upper teeth jut out at a strange angle?

    Most of us can answer “yes” to at least one of those questions. And even with corrective procedures like braces or extractions, it seems like our mouths are just too small to hold all our teeth.

    Why are these problems so common? Our teeth perform their function perfectly, so why don’t they perfectly fit in our jaws?

    In this post, we’ll look into science and history to see if there’s a connection between our crowded teeth and the modern diet.

    The Science of Our Teeth and Jaw

    According to science, it’s not that our teeth are too large for our mouths. The problem is that our jaws are too small for the teeth.

    How do we know this?

    Our teeth are encased in a hard cap of enamel. As a tooth forms, the cells that create this cap move from the inside out, leaving behind a trail of enamel. When the tooth erupts, these enamel-making cells die and are shed.

    What does this mean? Basically, the size and shape of our teeth are genetically programmed. They do not and cannot change based on any external factors.

    Our jaws, however, are quite different. Jaw size depends on environment and genetics. It grows longer the more it’s used, particularly during childhood. This is due to the way growing bone responds to stress.

    To test these theories, a biologist at Harvard University conducted a study on rodents. He fed one group soft, cooked food and he fed a second group hard, raw food.

    The results? The more the rodents chewed, the more visible growth in the bones that anchored the teeth. He concluded that jaw length ultimately depends on the stress placed on it while chewing.

    What We Learn from Anthropology

    But those are rodents, some may argue. What about humans?

    Let’s look at three studies on the subject.

    1. University College Dublin

    In this study, researchers analyzed “the lower jaws and teeth crown dimensions of 292 archaeological skeletons from between 28,000-6,000 years ago.”

    They found a noticeable difference in jaw structure that perfectly coincided with mankind’s transition from hunter-gatherers to farmers.

    1. University of Arkansas

    This study focused on the Hadza foragers in Tanzania, who still practice a traditional hunter-gatherer lifestyle.

    Researchers found an average of 20 erupted back teeth in a Hadza mouth (versus 16 in modern cultures). The tribespeople also show a tip-to-tip bite between the upper and lower front teeth, while the edges of the lower teeth form a perfect arch.

    1. Southern Illinois University

    In this study, dental anthropologists at Southern Illinois University compared city dwellers with rural residents in Chandigarh in northern India.

    The city dwellers ate mainly soft breads and mashed lentils, while the rural residents ate a diet of coarse millet and tough vegetables. Researchers saw notable differences in jaw size between the two groups.

    Putting the Facts Together

    These studies provide compelling evidence that diet dictates the ultimate size and shape of the human jaw.

    Earlier in mankind’s history, hunter-gatherers needed large, powerful jaws to chew raw vegetables and meat. As our society transitioned into farming, our diet started to include softer, cooked foods.

    Since chewing these foods didn’t demand the same amount of mouth strength, over time our jaws became smaller. Our teeth, however, did not. This is why teeth crowding and tooth impaction is so common today.

    In a nutshell, we all have modern jaws with an outdated number of teeth.

    What’s the Takeaway?

    Our modern diet has changed many things about our bodies, including the size of our jaws.

    Think about the mushy baby food we feed our infants. Think about baked goods, steamed vegetables, and cooked starches. What do they all have in common?

    They’re soft and easy to chew. This means our jaws don’t develop as much as nature intended them to.

    The result is crowded, crooked, or impacted teeth. Because our mouths are smaller than they should be, this could also contribute to problems like snoring and sleep apnea.

    Short of extracting problematic teeth, are there any other solutions?

    Researchers suggest that dentists and orthodontists should place more focus on growing jaws, especially in children. In adults, there are some surgical options that stimulate bone growth and can result in shorter treatment times.

    Of course, most of us don’t require such drastic measures. Dentists and orthodontists have plenty of other ways to correct our bites and keep our teeth and jaws healthy.

    The 17 Survival Uses For Dental Floss That Have Earned it a Permanent Place in Your Go-Bag

    If you were facing an emergency and only had a few minutes to pack, what would you include in your go-bag?

    Matches? Blankets? Flashlights? Dental floss?

    I know what you’re thinking: In a life or death situation, am I really going to concern myself with flossing?

    Although oral hygiene might not top your priority list in an emergency, survival would. You’d be surprised how many ways you can use ordinary dental floss in extraordinary ways!

    Read on to learn 17 important survival uses for dental floss.

    1. Make a Shelter

    If you need protection from the elements, you can use dental floss to create a lean-to. Thread the floss through the corners of your emergency blanket or the holes in a piece of tarp.

    1. Rig an Alarm

    Need a warning if something (or someone) is approaching? Tie a few aluminum cans together with floss and string them around the edge of your camp. You’ll hear intruders coming long before you’re in danger.

    1. String a Tripwire

    If you don’t have cans or other noisemakers for an alarm, you could always string an old-fashioned tripwire around your camp. Tie long pieces of dental floss a few inches above the ground along the perimeter of your camp.

    1. Restrain Someone

    It’s not a pleasant prospect, but you never know who (or what) you might meet in a survival situation. If you needed to restrain a dangerous person or animal, dental floss could literally save your life.

    1. Stitch a Wound

    It wouldn’t be the prettiest sight, but you could stitch a wound with a needle and dental floss. The floss should be strong enough to hold the skin together until you reach an emergency room.

    1. Go Fish

    You can create a makeshift “fishing pole” with a tree branch, dental floss, and a hook. You could also weave a crude fishing net with the floss or use it to repair an existing net.

    1. Replace Shoestrings

    You won’t get very far if your shoes are falling off. If you break a shoelace on your sneakers or boots, dental floss can secure your shoes during your getaway.

    1. Hang Up Food

    What if your escape route takes you into the wilderness? Protect yourself and your food supply by stringing it high above the ground with dental floss. This will deter hungry animals from roaming into your camp.

    1. Start a Fire

    Waxed dental floss burns easily, so it’s ideal to use as a firestarter. Alternately, you could use the floss to bundle pieces of wood or kindling together.

    1. Make a Clothesline

    Tie a long piece of dental floss between two trees and use it to dry your clothes. It won’t be strong enough to dry jeans or other heavy materials, but you can at least keep your socks dry.

    1. Secure Valuables

    Are you traveling with a compass, a pocket knife, or another important tool? Secure it to your backpack with dental floss to ensure it doesn’t get lost!

    1. Cut Food

    What if you lose (or forget to pack) a knife? Use dental floss as a makeshift knife to slice through a loaf of bread or a piece of meat.

    1. Repair Glasses

    If you lose a screw in your eyeglasses, thread a piece of dental floss through the space to hold everything in place. You could also tie the floss around the earpieces so you can hang your glasses around your neck.

    1. Tie Down

    Did you accidentally overload your car? If there’s no rope handy, you can tie down your trunk with sturdy dental floss. Loop it at least a dozen times to ensure it’s secure.

    1. Braided Rope

    Dental floss may be thin, but it’s very strong. In a pinch, you could braid several strands together to create a makeshift rope.

    1. Hair Tie

    The last thing you want in an emergency is the distraction of hair in your eyes. Use dental floss to keep your hair off your face. You could also use it to secure loose or baggy clothing.

    1. Clothing Repair

    If you rip your shirt or lose a button, dental floss can be a substitute for thread. It may not be a permanent solution, but it should do the trick until you can make the proper repairs.