We always try to eat healthily to suit our bodies, but do we try to eat and drink well for our teeth? Some of the staple foods we may never have thought of could be harming our teeth. It’s important to find a happy balance between your body’s health and your dental health, ensuring you’re taking care of both.
Acids and sugars encourage tooth decay, gum disease, and even tooth loss. Without proper cleaning, dental check-ups, and hygiene appointments you could be seriously damaging your teeth’s protective enamel layer.
Sweets, in particular sour sweets, are bad for your teeth. We all know about the dangers of too many sugary snacks, but the sourer the sweet the worse it is. Sour sweets contain lots of different types of acids that are far more volatile on your teeth. If they’re chewy then their residue can remain longer in your mouth, and if they’re boiled then the constant wash of sugary saliva can promote long-term damage. For those with an insatiable sweet tooth, snack on some chocolate – it’s far better for your teeth than these types of gummies are.
Alcohol comes in many forms and isn’t kind to our mouth in any of them. In a wider sense, it dries out your mouth. A dry mouth lacks saliva, which we need to prevent food from sticking to our teeth’s surfaces. It’s also effective at combatting the early signs of tooth decay and gum disease, so it’s important that you at least keep yourself hydrated while you drink alcohol. Other drinks like wine, both red and white, can damage your teeth because of their high acid concentration. Red wine can stain your teeth while white wine, because it is more acidic, can do more corrosive damage to your enamel. Sip on some water between alcoholic drinks to rehydrate the mouth and wash away acidic particles but try to cut back too.
Fizzy drinks drunk frequently can erode the protective layers of your teeth. As one-off treats they’re not as bad but drinking large amounts can seriously endanger your enamel. Carbonated drinks prompt the already unwanted plaque to produce more acid that attacks the protective enamel on our teeth. By continually sipping on these sodas, you’re bathing your teeth in acid that stimulates this destructive plaque. Limit your fizzy drink consumption and you could save your teeth from a world of bother.
Bread, especially white bread is another unexpected enemy of your teeth. Bread can form the staple of most of our lunch routines, and we may send our children to school with sandwiches every day. If you’re consuming a lot of white bread, you could be doing more damage than you think. When you chew bread, your saliva naturally breaks down the starches into sugar (which are far more common in white bread). These sugars and bits of bread can creep into the crevices of our teeth, causing cavities. Opting for less refined and less processed breads, like whole wheat, are a more teeth-friendly variant.
Starchy snacks like crisps can also be detrimental to our dental health. They’re loaded with starch that is broken down into sugars by our mouth. These sugars get trapped between our teeth, which the bacteria manifesting there can’t wait to gorge on. They’re a popular snack food, which means we’ll keep going back for more after short intervals. This snacking and dipping back in can be extremely bad for our teeth, because we’re maintaining a constant supply of this sugar. If you do want to snack on some crisps, it’s best to ration yourself out a portion in a bowl and eat them without break so you’re not topping up sugar levels periodically.
Some of these foods may have surprised you, but they don’t surprise your dentist! Before we pick something up off the supermarket shelves, we need to be mindful not just of our bodies but our teeth too. Allow yourself little treats and little windows to enjoy sugary food in but try to moderate as best you can.
Sometimes, despite our best efforts, we can see or feel our dental health deteriorate. If this is the case, then of course you can visit our dental practice in Grantham. Book your appointment online today or speak to a friendly member of staff on 01476 594480.