Calcium is a chemical element with symbol Ca and atomic number 20. As an alkaline earth metal, calcium is a reactive metal that forms a dark oxide-nitride layer when exposed to air. Its physical and chemical properties are most similar to its heavier homologues strontium and barium. It is the fifth most abundant element in Earth’s crust and the third most abundant metal, after iron and aluminium.
The most common calcium compound on Earth is calcium carbonate, found in limestone and the fossilised remnants of early sea life; gypsum, anhydrite, fluorite, and apatite are also sources of calcium. The name derives from Latin calx “lime”, which was obtained from heating limestone.
Role of Calcium in Dentistry:
Calcium is one of the main minerals that make up teeth and bones. It also plays an important role in many other bodily functions, such as blood clotting, muscle contraction, and nerve function.
While calcium is important for healthy teeth and bones, too much calcium can actually be harmful. When there is more calcium than the body needs, it can build up in the blood vessels and cause problems such as heart disease and strokes.
Dental products that contain Calcium:
Many dental products contain calcium, including toothpaste, mouthwash, and chewing gum. Some of these products are designed to help prevent cavities, while others are meant to help keep teeth and gums healthy.
1. Chewing Gum:
Chewing gum is a popular way to get calcium into the body. Gum that contains xylitol, a sugar alcohol, has been shown to reduce cavities. Xylitol is a natural sweetener that can be found in some fruits and vegetables. It is also used as a sugar substitute in many products, such as candy, gum, and baked goods.
Mouthwash is another product that can help deliver calcium to the teeth. Some mouthwashes contain fluoride, which has been shown to reduce cavities. Mouthwashes that contain fluoride are available over the counter and by prescription.
Toothpaste is another way to get calcium into the body. Most toothpastes contain fluoride, which has been shown to reduce cavities. Toothpastes that contain fluoride are available over the counter and by prescription.
There are also toothpastes that contain calcium phosphate, which can help to remineralize the teeth. These toothpastes are available over the counter and by prescription.
Calcium supplements are also available. These supplements come in a variety of forms, such as pills, liquids, and chewables. They are available over the counter and by prescription.
It is important to talk to a healthcare provider before taking any supplements. This is because too much calcium can be harmful.
Foods that contain Calcium:
There are many foods that contain calcium, including dairy products, leafy green vegetables, and certain types of fish.
- Dairy products are a good source of calcium. They include milk, cheese, and yogurt.
- Leafy green vegetables are also a good source of calcium. These vegetables include kale, spinach, and collard greens.
- Certain types of fish, such as sardines and salmon, are also a good source of calcium. The bones in these fish are edible and a good source of calcium.
- Calcium is also found in some fruits, such as oranges and figs.
Calcium is an important mineral for healthy teeth and bones. It also plays a role in many other bodily functions. While calcium is important, too much calcium can actually be harmful. Dental products that contain calcium include toothpaste, mouthwash, and chewing gum.
Calcium supplements are also available. Foods that contain calcium include dairy products, leafy green vegetables, and certain types of fish.