Raisins May Prevent Gum Disease

Wednesday, July 31st, 2013, 5:03 pm

Even though they’re dried fruit, raisins are also a sticky, sugary snack. These food characteristics are what we typically associate with cavities, tooth decay, and gum disease. So why are people saying raisins might actually prevent these dental problems?

Don’t let the texture and sugar content fool you. According to a study from the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Dentistry, certain compounds found in raisins may in fact help fight cavities and gum disease. Researchers claim that several components of the food may kill germs in the mouth.

The phytochemicals (more specifically, a plant antioxidant known as oleanic acid) found in raisins, according to the study, may stop the development of certain bacteria, like Streptococcus mutans, which causes cavities, and Porphyromonas gingivalis, which causes gum disease. They may also prevent bacteria from sticking to the surface of teeth, which would normally lead to plaque formation and consequent cavities.

The overall results imply that oleanic acid can inhibit harmful bacteria growth to prevent gum disease, cavities, and tooth decay. It is not yet clear just how many raisins must be eaten to earn these oral health benefits. Despite this, eating a handful of raisins once in a while is never a bad idea. This study implies that we no longer need to worry about this particular snack harming our teeth or damaging our oral health.

While certain foods and treatments might help prevent cavities, sometimes they are inevitable. In these cases, teeth must be treated with fillings. Thankfully, patients can choose the usual local anesthetic or some kind of sedation when receiving treatment. Anxious patients don’t need to worry when they come to Wilbanks Smile Center as we offer sedation dentistry for anyone suffering from dental fears.

Dentist in Toccoa

To learn more about gum disease, contact us today to schedule a consultation. Our offices are located in Toccoa, GA, and we can be reached at 706-886-9439. We look forward to hearing from you.

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