Nursing Mothers Have The Risk of Bone Loss Around Teeth

Calcium is the most abundant mineral found in the body, with 99-percent stored in bones and teeth. Calcium helps your body perform essential functions including muscle and blood vessel contraction, as well as hormone and enzyme secretion, explains the Office of Dietary Supplements. The Recommended Daily Allowance of calcium for adult's ages 19 to 50 years old is 1,000 mg daily. 
 
However, certain health conditions may necessitate a low calcium diet. Should your doctor prescribe a low-calcium regimen, there are a number of healthy foods available for you to choose from.
 
Eat several servings of vegetables a day as recommended by the United States Department of Agriculture. Many vegetables, but not all, are low in calcium. Cooked green, leafy vegetables tend to have the highest calcium content. According to nutritional information provided by MyPyramid.gov, a U.S. Federal Government website, a ½ cup of cooked asparagus contains 10 mg of calcium and 10 calories; a ½ cup of cooked kohlrabi contains 21 mg of calcium and 18 calories; and a ½ cup cooked summer squash contains 24 mg of calcium and 18 calories.
 
Mothers who breastfeed should be sure to have enough Calcium in their diet, or may risk bone loss around their teeth and gums, according to a new study that appears in the January issue of the Journal of Periodontology (JOP). 
 
Researchers from Tohoku University in Japan investigated if lactation affects alveolar bone loss, the bone surrounding the roots of teeth, in rat models of experimental periodontitis. They found mothers who are lactating could put the bone structures around their teeth at risk, especially when there was not enough Calcium in their diet. 
 
The study showed that all groups with insufficient Calcium intake saw an acute inflammatory reaction in periodontal tissues and disruption of the gingival epithelium, the tissues surrounding the teeth, in addition to increased attachment loss, and increased alveolar bone loss. Those groups which were lactating saw even greater attachment loss and bone loss. 
 
"We know a high-Calcium diet can promote healthy teeth and gums," said Dr. Preston D. Miller, DDS, President of the American Academy of Periodontology, "But this research indicates that nursing mothers should be especially conscious of having enough Calcium in their diet. While breast milk is critical to their baby's bone development, mothers should be sure to have enough calcium, or risk bone loss in her mouth, which can worsen periodontal diseases. Given that a thorough periodontal evaluation should be done as soon as a woman finds out that she is pregnant, monitoring periodontal tissues, including more frequent cleanings during pregnancy and continuing until 3 months after delivery, will help assure periodontal health." 
 
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