When it comes to oral health, most sites tend to extoll the virtues of fluoride. But calcium is equally important. As a matter of fact, the role of calcium in tooth development is more significant than you think. As one of the primary materials that make up tooth enamel, calcium intake helps fight against the demineralization of teeth that lets tooth decay to penetrate your teeth. But how does calcium make your teeth stronger?
Calcium, as you might know, builds up most of the bones in your body. But your bones aren’t the only things calcium makes up. If you scrape off a bit of tooth enamel, you’re sure to find the right amount of calcium in its composition.
The role of calcium in tooth development starts when you’re very young. As you develop in your mother’s womb, the nutrients you get help form small buds that eventually become your teeth. Getting the right amount of calcium during this stage is crucial for mothers, as it’s what makes up the tooth buds. Calcium, paired with phosphorus, solidifies your tooth enamel into the shield it becomes, making your teeth less susceptible to tooth decay.
But how does calcium make your teeth stronger?
Calcium is what cements your bones
Ever wondered what makes your bones and tooth enamel so sturdy? You have calcium to thank for that. Calcium, technically speaking, is the cement that holds your bones together. While your bone is mostly made of collagen, calcium fills the in-betweens to make the bones sturdier.
On the flip side, the role of calcium in tooth development is much more pronounced, since it makes up most of your teeth. As part of the mineral calcium phosphate, its crystallized structure gives the tooth enamel the strength it needs to protect the rest of your teeth. That said, a lack of calcium intake not only makes your pearly whites brittle. The demineralization of teeth is also more likely.
Calcium makes your tooth enamel rock-solid when paired with phosphorus
When it comes to calcium for bones and teeth, it’s important to note the distinction between the two. For one, teeth are considerably stronger than your bones, thanks to their nature. They are also, as a result, less flexible, and cannot regenerate.
But how does calcium make your teeth stronger? As we mentioned earlier, when calcium interacts with phosphorus, they create a crystalline structure that clumps together tightly. This is why tooth enamel is the hardest substance in your body. Add fluoride—which also bonds with calcium phosphate—and the demineralization of teeth seems unlikely.
Calcium protects your teeth from gum disease and tooth decay
Because of how strong it is and what it adds to the bones, calcium then helps protect your teeth from any dental problems. Mainly, gum disease and tooth decay. When your teeth are healthy enough to withstand the demineralization of teeth, they’re less likely to contract tooth decay, which can lead to a slew of problems. And because calcium strengthens your bones, your jaw bone won’t disintegrate so quickly during gum disease.