Dental Blog

How Does Gluten Affect Your Oral Health?

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

November is Gluten-Free Awareness Month, andthe gluten-free craze has many of us second-guessing our own gluten intake.

But does gluten have any effect on teeth? Gluten is a protein that is found in wheat and grains. Some people have a gluten sensitivity or Celiac disease, in which eating gluten affects the lining of the small intestine and prevents the body from absorbing nutrients. It is estimated that 2 million Americans have Celiac disease and 18 million Americans have a gluten sensitivity.

For those with Celiac disease and gluten sensitivities, gluten can have surprising effects on your oral health. Studies show that for those diagnosed, gluten may cause:

  • Damage to teeth enamel
  • Teeth discoloration with brown or yellow spots
  • Canker sores
  • Bad breath
  • Inflammatory gum disease

If you’re afflicted by a gluten sensitivity or Celiac disease, doctors recommend a strict gluten-free diet. In addition, visit your dentist for help treating and maintaining your oral health. Fortunately, you’re in good company. There are many gluten-free bloggers sharing their own delicious, gluten-free options of favorite foods (like gluten-free pancakes!). If you’re looking for gluten-free Thanksgiving dishes, check out Eating Well.

Sources:
http://celiac.nih.gov/PDF/Dental_Enamel_Defects_508.pdf
http://www.jcda.ca/article/b39/
http://sklad.cumc.columbia.edu/celiacdiseasecenter/wp-content/uploads/The-association-between-celiac-disease-dental-enamel-defects-and-aphthous-ulcers-in-a-United-States-cohort.pdf
http://www.celiaccentral.org/non-celiac-gluten-sensitivity/