Foods that are bad for your teeth
Taking care of our teeth is a lifelong endeavour. Tooth decay can happen at any time for loads of reasons – one bein having a plaque with bacteria that feed on the sugar added to your diet. As a result, cavities form, allowing acid from metabolising sugar to dissolve your tooth structure.
Some foods contribute more to plaque and tooth decay than others. People aged between six and 19 face a higher risk of the most common chronic disease called cavities. According to Bloor West Smiles Dental, cavities cause pain, chewing problems and tooth abscesses.
You can prevent havoc in your mouth. Brushing and flossing teeth twice a day is one way to start taking care of your teeth but avoiding or limiting the consumption of certain foods can help too.
Everyone knows that sweets are bad for your teeth. Sour candies, especially, have more different types of acid that affect the health of your teeth.
Sweets are chewy and stick to your teeth for a while, resulting in tooth decay. A block of chocolate is surprisingly a better option than sweets because it’s easy to chew and washes away effortlessly.
Sweets that dissolve in your mouth can help with your sweet addiction. Stay away from caramels, lollipops, hard candies and jelly beans. Because of the hard texture, those sweet ones can’t wash with your saliva.
Remember to brush your teeth after eating sweets. After all, the best smile is a healthy smile.
Although popcorn is a healthy snack, it can be hard on your teeth too. Popcorn is mainly enjoyed when watching a movie. However, while you are watching a movie and nibbling on popcorn, bacteria are given more time to damage your teeth.
A popcorn con is that it gets stuck between your teeth. You may forget that the popcorn piece is stuck there without a toothpick or floss.
Unpopped kernels can be a problem, too, because they crack teeth if you accidentally bite down on one. Next time, when grabbing a handful of popcorn, make sure there are no unpopped kernels.
The bread aisle may be common for you at the supermarket, but did you know that your saliva breaks the starch into sugar when you chew bread? The bread transforms into a gummy paste-like substance and gets stuck in the crevices of your teeth.
The gummy past causes cavities too. Next time you decide to buy bread, opt for whole wheat because it has less sugar and isn’t easily broken down in your mouth.
Gas drinks, with or without sugar, still contain acid. Acid damages your teeth and leads to cavities and dental erosion. Avoiding gas drinks helps keep your teeth healthy, but unsweetened or water are better replacement.
If you can’t resist a gas drink, don’t brush your teeth immediately afterwards because the acid softens tooth enamel and your teeth become more vulnerable to abrasion.
Drinking alcohol isn’t exactly the healthiest thing to do, especially when done in a chunk. Have you noticed how dry your mouth becomes when you drink alcohol?
A dry mouth is the result of very little saliva, and saliva keeps our teeth clean by washing away food particles. Saliva also repairs early signs of tooth decay, gum disease and other oral problems.
When you drink alcohol, make sure to drink lots of water and use fluoride rinse and other oral hydration solutions.
Citrus fruits and juices, such as oranges, grapefruits and lemons, taste good and pack a Vitamin C punch! However, too much citrus can erode the teeth’ enamel and lead to decay.
Citrus acid is a bother to mouth sore too. Get your dose of citrus antioxidants and vitamins by eating and drinking them in moderation. Afterwards, rinse your mouth with water.
Tomato pasta sauce
Tomatoes go well with pasta dishes, but they are acidic. Spaghetti plus a tomato pasta sauce does double the damage to your enamel. The acidic sauce mixed with the carbohydrates in pasta is bacteria’s dream team to ruining your teeth.
To avoid cavities, rather eat pasta with cheese.
You may hear that dried fruits are a healthy snack, but not all. Apricots, prunes, figs and raisins – for example – are sticky textures. They get wedged in your teeth and cling in unknown crevices with all of that sugar. The fresh versions are better for you and your teeth.
If you can’t avoid dried fruits, remember to rinse your mouth with water afterwards, then brush and floss.
Fighting the enemy
Sugar and acid are your teeth’s worst enemy. Next time, think about what you are putting in your mouth and how it affects your teeth. Try consuming food with ample vitamins and minerals, which neutralise acid, build up saliva and repair your teeth’ enamel.
Food that causes plaque is a big ‘no no’—Munch on mouth-friendly snacks, such as nuts, cheeses and non-acidic fruits and vegetables.
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