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Elemental 028 Extra - Tooth Worries

Greetings everyone! I'm new here and I cannot even begin to communicate how pleased I am to have found this forum, and I don't think that's just because I'm currently pretty wired on Prednisone...

My Crohn's was diagnosed 8 years ago when I was thirteen, and since then I have been relatively lucky with my symptoms and flare-ups being mostly very mild and thankfully short lived. During the last 6 months however, I've gone through a major flare up in my small bowel which couldn't have come at a worse time. I'm a writer, and having just graduated this summer I've been trying desperately to juggle commitments with the hope of getting my life on track. I was just too tired and in too much pain to do anything once I got back from my part time job. After several unsuccessful courses of steroids and a long stay in hospital (just got out this week), I'm finally feeling near the top of my game again. I've been started on the Humira injection (my queries about which I will post in a more relevant place) and a short course of prednisone.

Introduction over.. Back to the point!

As I type I'm gulping down a truly delicious "Summer Fruits" flavoured Elemental 028 Extra drink. I was prescribed a sole diet of them by my dietician in order to give my guts a must needed holiday. I've seen a few threads about them on here, and just wanted to direct a few questions at those in the know.

I've noticed that these drinks are overwhelmingly sweet and sugary, but also very clingy in the mouth. Add to this the fact that the only other items I'm allowed to eat alongside this are 7up and Foxes Glacier Mints. I'm very worried about my teeth rotting away. I've found myself brushing my teeth about four times a day just to get rid of the horrible cloying taste, and have noticed a bit of a plaque build up.

Could any of you recommend any products that could help to protect my teeth? Some kind of mouthwash or something?
Welcome to the sight! Glad you are feeling somewhat better and out of the hospital. Good luck with your recovery. I know what you mean about being worried over cavity troubles. At one point for me visits to the dentist were far to common for enjoyment. My dentist made a nice living repairing my teeth. What I found most helpful, and has kept me away from the dentist chair was taking vitamin D3, vitamin K2, and a low grain diet. Haven't had a tooth pain or cavity since I began doing this close to 5 years ago.

I later saw this article on Dr. Guyenet's sight which is pretty similar to what I did for cavity prevention. Maybe it can be of help.

"Dr. Mellanby's Tooth Decay Reversal Diet"

My dentist recommended Crest Pro Health rinse to me. I like it because it's alcohol free, so you don't get the burn as you do with Listerine. It's widely available in the US but I've not seen it in shops since I moved to the UK. Just checked and you can get it on Amazon.co.uk and other online UK retailers. Also, make sure you are flossing! Probably more important than brushing several times a day.
I started on VivonexPlus, another elemental diet similar to Elemental 028 for four months earlier this year and then again for two weeks in July.

You could try the unflavoured versions--I know sounds gross-- but you get used to them. Also use a straw and make sure it is positioned at the back of your mouth so that you don't bathe your teeth with it. As well, drink lots of water between the drinks, swishing it around as though you are gargling.

My dental hygenist said the coating on my teeth was called biofilm- it was from a combination of the Vivonex, malnourishment and the change in intestional flora from the liquid diet. She uses an ultrasonic device to clean my teeth and I go more often to see her. I also developed inflamed gums and loose teeth. No cavities, however. I have been slowly introducing food again since the end of July and I am noticing that my teeth are beginning to improve.

Good luck with your treatment and the writing.
@ Beach: Thanks a bunch for your quick reply! This seems like a really good community. I take a multivitamin every day, so hopefully that should be doing some work towards protecting my teeth. I had a look at the site you recommended but obviously, I'm not able to eat real food - doctor's orders.

@ Mapper: I will ask my dentist about this mouthwash when I go. I'm sure there must be a similar alternative you can buy in the shops or the chemist in this country. I will start flossing again too. Used to do it - got lazy.

@ happy: Yes I have heard of the VivonexPlus diet. Four months is a hell of a long time! Well done with that. Thankfully it looks like I'll only have to stay on the Elemental for a month so I probably don't have as much to worry about. What you say about this 'biofilm' is really interesting. I suppose the digestive system has its own ways of coping with such a strange diet. I am going to arrange more regular dentist appointments.

Thanks all