By now, you are probably aware by now of the benefits that CBD can have for general health and well-being, or for more specific issues like anxiety and pain. But you might not have realised that CBD can provide benefits for your teeth and gums. The importance of oral health should not be overlooked. While we all know that poor dental hygiene can result in cavities and decay, it can also lead to much more serious issues such as brain or heart infections.
There are some specialised CBD dental products, such as mouthwash, toothpaste or chewing gum, but you can also get many of the same benefits by using CBD oils, tinctures and edibles.
Here are some of the ways that CBD use can lead to better dental health.
Fight bacteria that lead to decay
The journey to tooth decay begins when we eat foods that are high in sugar or starch, such as sweets, bread, fruit and even milk. There are bacteria that occur naturally in the mouth that feed on these sugars, creating acids as they digest. It’s this acid that leads to damage to the tooth enamel, resulting in decay. Research has shown that CBD can eliminate two of the most common acid-producing bacteria in the mouth, Streptococcus mutans and Streptococcus sobrinus.
Reduce the risk of gum disease
Gum disease goes through two stages. The first is known as gingivitis and is fairly common in adults. In this stage, the symptoms include inflammation of the gums, as well as pain and bleeding when brushing. CBD can help with gingivitis by reducing inflammation and alleviating pain.
If left untreated, gingivitis can develop to the next stage of gum disease, known as periodontal disease. At this point, you can begin to lose bone in the jaw, which can only be corrected by surgery. While medical intervention is still necessary, research has shown that treatment with CBD slows down bone loss in those with advanced gum disease.
If you’re experiencing a toothache, you should be calling your dentist for an appointment. While there are some non-serious causes for toothache, such as something stuck in your teeth, most causes will require investigation by a dentist. These can be things like tooth decay, a loose filling, a tooth fracture or infected gums – all of which require treatment. However, while you wait for your appointment, CBD oil applied topically can be used to temporarily relieve the pain.
Treat TMJ disorder
TMJ disorder is a blanket term used for any issues that occur with your temporomandibular joint -which connects your jaw to your skull – or the muscles around it. This can be a temporary disorder caused by injury or tension, or a more chronic problem caused by issues such as arthritis. Symptoms can include anything from the clicking of the jaw when eating, through to pain in the jaw, face and ear, or chronic headaches. CBD can help with multiple symptoms of TMJ including pain, inflammation and muscle tension.
Help with recovery after dental surgery
Hopefully, your dental visits are as simple as getting a check-up and a clean. But there are all kinds of issues that might require surgery at some point. This could simply be the removal of those pesky wisdom teeth or something more involved such as corrective jaw surgery or treatment for sleep apnoea.
Recovering from any surgery to the mouth or face can be very painful and debilitating. You will most likely be unable to eat solid food, and you may also have trouble breathing through your nose. CBD’s natural painkilling effects will help make you more comfortable, while its role as an anti-inflammatory will help your injuries to heal faster.
Aid with fear of the dentist
One of the problems many people face with their dental health is not hygiene itself, but a fear of the dentist. This fear leads people to avoid check-up and cleaning appointments or to avoid seeing a dentist even when they are in pain. Of course, dental issues do not go away on their own, and delaying a visit will only make these problems harder to treat. CBD’s calming effects can help patients feel more relaxed about their trip to the dentist.
When used as oils, tinctures and gummies, CBD can have all of the benefits for your dental health as listed above. However, it should be noted that this does not apply to smoking CBD, such as flowers. There is nothing dangerous about the flowers themselves, the smoke can lead to a dry mouth, reducing bacteria-killing saliva. The heat can also increase any inflammation in the mouth.
CBD can also interact with some medications that might be used during and after dental procedures. This includes anaesthetic, blood thinners and medications that require very specific doses. If you are a CBD user, please speak to your dentist before undergoing any procedures.