As summer relaxation begins, our structure and good habits may fade. Keep your oral health in shape by remembering that indulging in some foods may affect your teeth in ways that you don’t want.
Below are the top foods that can damage your teeth and tips on how to enjoy them without the adverse effects.
While it ice may not contain sugar – chewing on any hard substance can damage your tooth structure and the enamel. Our office recommends drinking water as a better option.
Exposing your teeth to acidic foods like citrus can erode your enamel. Our office recommends drinking plenty of water with this type of food.
3. Suckers & other hard candies
They may not seem harmful but sucking on something sugary puts your teeth in constant exposure to that sugar. Chewing hard candies can also put your teeth at risk for a dental emergency such as a broken tooth. We recommend chewing xylitol gum/ mint instead, as xylitol has beneficial qualities for your oral health.
4. Sticky Foods
Foods like dried fruits can get stuck in the spaces between teeth and even natural sugars shouldn’t be left on your teeth for any length of time. We recommend rinsing with water or better yet, brushing and flossing after snacks.
5. Crunchy Foods
Like sticky foods, potato chips and other crunchy snacks also can get stuck in the crevices of your teeth. Anytime food is in your mouth for a length of time, plaque bacteria can begin attacking your enamel. So again we recommend rinsing with water or better yet, brushing and flossing afterward.
6. Sugary Drinks
Soda, energy drinks, and juice are examples of drinks that put your teeth in constant exposure of sugary liquids. Soda is doubly dangerous for your teeth because the carbonation it contains is acidic and, as you know, acid can cause wear to your enamel. Our office recommends drinking water to rinse the sugar away after finishing the sugary beverage OR even better —drink water instead!
Coffee not only stains your teeth but can dry out your mouth. When your mouth doesn’t make enough saliva, which naturally rinses the mouth, it creates an ideal environment for the plaque bacteria which can cause many problems for oral health. We recommend rinsing your mouth with water after drinking any beverage that can stain your teeth and do not recommend drinking coffee throughout the day.
Consuming alcohol can cause dry mouth due to dehydration. This is a problem because your saliva helps to wash away food debris and reduce plaque. Dry mouth can lead to tooth decay and gum disease.
The heavy use of alcohol can increase your risk of oral cancer. Our office recommends chewing xylitol gum as an effective way to stimulate salivation, which has been shown to significantly reduce tooth decay in adults who use it regularly.
While it’s best to avoid foods that can damage your teeth – brushing, flossing, or at least rinsing with water after consumption can help prevent tooth decay and staining.