Mineral and vitamin deficiencies not only affect your physical health but also your oral health.

All nutrients play an important part in maintaining your health.

If you are short on anything, then you will see physical results of that.

You can get lethargic or have body pains.

But also it can have a detrimental effect on your dental health causing oral health problems.

This article discusses how these deficiencies can affect your health and what you can do about them.

Keep reading to know more!

vitamin deficiencies- vitamin A

Vitamin Deficiencies Impacting Oral Health-Vitamin A

Vitamin A is present in meats, dairy, fruits and vegetables.

It is an unsaturated nutritional organic compound.

It is an important vitamin for growth.

Vitamin A maintains the immune system, helps in the body’s growth and development.

Also, it is crucial for vision.

However, there are about one -third children below the age of five years old that are deficient in Vitamin A.

This impacts the oral health of these children as well.

Enamel hypoplasia or impaired tooth function arises from a Vitamin A deficiency.

As a result, there is less quantity of enamel on the teeth, partially or completely exposing the dentin.

There are pits, grooves in the teeth and areas without any tooth enamel resulting in a translucent look.

This is a developmental defect that affects the baby teeth and even permanent teeth of children.

Hence forming an enamel matrix while tooth development occurs which is rather defective.

Hence, your child’s teeth will suffer if they do not eat enough meat, fruits and vegetables as well as dairy products to get their Vitamin A intake.

Good sources of Vitamin A include:

  • cheese
  • milk
  • oily fish
  • yogurt
  • liver products
  • eggs
  • fortified spreads that are also low-fat
  • leafy vegetables like spinach and sweet potato
  • Mango, apricots, papaya and other yellow food

The last two are food sources for beta carotene.

However, the body converts the beta carotene into Vitamin A.

Let’s talk about other vitamin deficiencies and their impact below!

vitamin deficiencies resulting in mouth sores

 

Vitamin B (B12 and More)

This Vitamin has several types that are water-soluble and aid in cell metabolism.

It is divided into several other forms among which the common ones are Vitamin B1, B2, B2, B5, B6, B7, B9 and B12.

All of these are important for your oral health.

Vitamin B 1 deficiency: Angular cheilitis also known as cracked lips causing inflammation in the corners of your mouth

B2 and B3 deficiency: Tongue inflammation, ulcerative gingivitis and cracked lips

Vitamin B6 deficiency: Periodontal disease, sore tongue as well as a burning sensation in the mouth

Vitamin B 12 deficiency can lead to several oral health problems.

It can cause periodontal disease but can also result in severe symptoms of said disease.

Therefore, people who lack Vitamin B12 have a greater gum pocket if they get gum disease rather than those who have the disease but do not lack B12.

Since it is crucial for wound healing and healthy blood cells, a deficiency can cause severe symptoms in periodontal disease.

Other than that, a deficiency of Vitamin B12 can also contribute to halitosis, painful mouth ulcers, angular cheilitis and hemorrhagic gingivitis.

A deficiency can result from only eating vegetables as this vitamin is found abundantly in meat or enriched flours.

Senior citizens are at risk of being deficient as they can face difficulty in the absorption of water-soluble nutrients.

Athletes use more energy, hence their absorption is higher leading to a deficiency.

Pregnant women require Vitamin B9 i.e. folic acid during their term and diabetics start lacking Vitamin B1.

Popular sources of Vitamin B include: 

  • milk
  • supplements
  • liver and kidney
  • turkey
  • enriched flours
  • tuna and other fish such as salmon and mackerel
  • eggs
  • cheese
  • shellfish such as oysters and clams

You can get your healthy dose of Vitamin B from these foods.

gingivitis

Vitamin Deficiencies- Vitamin C

Like Vitamin B, Vitamin C is also water-soluble.

It can maintain connective tissues and repair them.

Moreover, it has antioxidant properties.

Vitamin C is commonly present in citrus fruits such as oranges and lemons as well as vegetables like Brussels sprouts and broccoli.

One of the most common symptoms of Vitamin C deficiency in oral health is that of gingivitis.

Bleeding gingiva may be due to several causes including poor oral health.

However, Vitamin C deficiency may also be a contributor in this oral health condition.

Taking enough Vitamin C through these food sources may help prevent gingivitis:

  • strawberries
  • potatoes
  • Brussels sprouts
  • blackcurrants
  • broccoli
  • peppers
  • citrus fruits and juices

Vitamin C benefits are vital not only for your oral health but also for your skin and general well-being.

Therefore, regularly consume these foods to not fall deficient.

vitamin d and k deficiency

Viamin Deficiencies- Vitamin D and K

Even if you consume lots of calcium to keep your enamel strong, you need vitamin D to absorb it.

This fat-soluble vitamin helps in the absorption of not only calcium but phosphorus too.

Hence, a deficiency harms your enamel but can also lead to other health problems such as osteoporosis.

This osteoporosis may even lead to tooth loss because of the weakening of bones.

Vitamin D is also known for resulting in the production of antimicrobial proteins.

These help to fight bacteria in the mouth that causes tooth decay.

Hence, if you are deficient in this vitamin then you will see an increase in tooth cavities.

Children who took Vitamin D supplements were 47 percent less likely to develop cavities.

A lack of this nutrient can also change the shape of your pulp horns.

Generally, it is of a U shape while lack of vitamin D can change its shape to look more like an H.

Also, it can cause hypo-mineralization as well as alveolar bone patterns that are not normal.

This can affect and cause damage to your teeth.

Hence, it is important to eat the right foods to get enough of this nutrient.

Food sources for Vitamin D

  • red meat
  • salmon
  • egg yolk
  • fortified foods
  • oily fish

Other than these, the sun is also a prominent source of Vitamin D.

If your area does not get enough sunlight then take supplements or eat these foods to compensate for that.

Vitamin K2 also works alongside calcium to help in its absorption.

It assists in keeping the oral microbe in balance maintaining your oral ecology.

Moreover, it also helps in the remineralization of the enamel.

Thus, it can prevent decay and cavities but also reverse cavities.

Food sources for Vitamin K2 include: 

  • beef
  • pork
  • dairy products
  • soybeans
  • egg yolk
  • chicken

Hence, both Vitamin D and K are important in providing calcium to your teeth.

Besides vitamins, minerals and other nutrients are also important for your teeth.

Let’s find out more about them.

mineral deficiency

Minerals and Nutrients Important for Your Oral Health

Calcium 

Calcium helps to strengthen your bones.

Hence, it also impacts your teeth as well as your jaw bone.

Calcium deficiency can lead to bone weakening and a subsequent loss in bone density.

The jaw bone can become weaker enough so that it cannot support the roots of your teeth.

Therefore, resulting in eventual tooth loss.

Hypocalcemia can make your teeth brittle and also make you more susceptible to tooth decay.

Hence, you need calcium along with Vitamin D and Vitamin K2 to ensure that your teeth and jawbone are fine.

Calcium rich foods include: 

  • dairy products
  • okra
  • kale
  • soy drinks
  • bread from fortified flour
  • fish such as sardine whereby you can eat their bones

If this is not enough, you can get your calcium intake through supplements.

Iron 

If you have an iron deficiency then you may develop a sore tongue.

Your tongue will turn red and have a strong burning sensation. It will also hurt.

It can also result in other oral health problems such as angular cheilitis, salivary gland dysfunction and dysphagia.

You can have an iron deficiency if you suffer from anemia and have poor absorption.

Pregnancy and heavy menstrual periods can also cause a deficiency.

Hence, taking supplements and iron-rich foods can help in becoming less deficient.

Iron food sources include: 

  • beans such as kidney beans and chickpeas
  • soybean flour
  • liver
  • nuts
  • red meat
  • dried fruit

Men require 8.7 mg of iron daily.

Women between the ages of 19 to 50 will need 14.8mg while those above 50 require 8.7 mg per day.

foods in vitamin deficiencies

Maintaining a Healthy Diet

A good balance of all nutrients, minerals and vitamins is crucial for your oral as well as overall health.

Hence, your diet should include all the necessary vitamins and minerals.

However, you should never overdo it.

Therefore, keep your daily requirements in mind especially if you can measure them by taking supplements.

Otherwise, eat healthily and stay away from foods that cause more trouble for your oral health than benefit it.

A deficiency of all these vitamins and minerals ca have detrimental effects on your gums, teeth, jaw bone and overall mouth ecology.

Thus, do not forgo any of them in your diet and eat a healthy dose daily.

Take supplements of said vitamins and minerals only after consulting your doctor.

If you are noticing any of these oral health problems then ask your dentist if they are resulting from any vitamin deficiencies.

After treatment, gradually increase your intake of that vitamin.