How to Get More Calcium in Your Diet

Milk is the most obvious way to load your system with calcium, but what if you can’t drink milk or you don’t like it? Without calcium, your bones can become weak and so can your teeth. Without a healthy amount of calcium in your diet, you can run into many problems. Your body relies on calcium for proper bone growth and strength. Thankfully, there are plenty of other ways to get calcium than just by drinking milk!

How Does Calcium Help You?

We know that calcium is what bones are mainly made up of, but what else does it do? Well, it contributes to healthy and strong teeth. It also helps your gum tissue, muscles, and nerves to function as they should. A body without calcium simply can’t function.

How Much Calcium Do We Need?

While the amount of calcium that you need varies depending on your age and size, the approximate amount is between 1000mg and 1300mg. Small children under the age of 4 need 700mg or less.

If you deprive your body of calcium and actually receive less than 500mg per day, you put your body at greater risk of developing gum disease! The scary thing is, the majority of people fail to get their proper intake of calcium every day. Try to ensure that your body is getting at least 800mg of calcium per day.

Non-Dairy Sources of Calcium

Most people can get their calcium from dairy products, which are loaded with it, but if you don’t have that option, here are some alternatives:

  • Canned fish with the bones in
  • Tofu (tofu has added calcium and can have over 800mg in half a cup!)
  • Dark leafy greens (dark greens can have up to 350mg of calcium)
  • Almonds
  • Dried Figs
  • Fortified drinks (many brands of orange juice contain calcium)
  • Beans and black-eyed peas

There are many sources of calcium, but it is important that you keep track of how much you get so that you don’t deprive yourself of this necessary nutrient to keep your teeth and bones strong!

Why You Need a Mouth Guard When Playing Sports

For many parents, cheering their children on from the sidelines is a favorite pastime. At My Dental Clinic, we’re excited to see your children be active and have fun playing sports as well. However, we can’t help but think about the safety of their teeth! Sports are well known to be a hobby that comes with the risk of injury. Even in non-contact sports such as track or gymnastics, it’s possible to sustain an injury to the mouth just by a misstep or a fall. Fortunately, these injuries are preventable. Just as athletes wear knee pads or shin guards, mouth guards should be a part of their equipment to protect their smiles.

The Importance of a Mouth Guard

A mouth guard is an oral appliance custom-made to fit athletes. It is designed to protect teeth, including any orthodontic appliances, from damage during sports. It is meant to fit snugly against the teeth and orthodontics to offer a layer of protection to absorb impact. Mouth guards are a critical piece of equipment when playing sports – they are the only way to ensure the safety of the teeth and orthodontics, either by preventing injuries altogether or minimizing the damage.

Types of Mouth Guards

Mouth guards are made of a soft plastic or laminate and come in three different types, each in a different price range and providing a different level of protection.

  • Stock: The most inexpensive option, these mouth guards come preformed and ready to wear. The drawback to the affordability is that, because they are premade, they usually don’t fit very well. They can be bulky and make it difficult for the wearer to talk or breathe.
  • Boil and bite: This type of mouth guard allows some customization. It requires the material to be boiled first, causing it to soften, then (after some cooling) biting down on it to shape it around the teeth. These are slightly more expensive than stock mouth guards but offer a better fit.
  • Custom-fitted: These mouth guards are made in a dentist office (or a professional laboratory) and, though they come in as the most expensive option, they provide the best fit and protection, and are the highest recommended.