Do you ever wonder what more you could, and maybe should, be doing in order to better protect your smile from common threats like cavities and even gum disease? Are you particularly curious if there are any simple steps that can be taken to help prevent these and other dental issues? Daily dental hygiene is one important way to protect the smile. But what you eat and drink can also either help, or harm, your oral health. To prevent problems, it is important to know what foods should be avoided, or at least limited.
Be Careful When Consuming Sugar
It’s important to limit one’s sugar intake, in any form. That is because sugar is what bacteria in the mouth feed upon. Therefore, the more sugar you consume, the more likely you are to develop dental decay, which can lead to cavities that would require dental fillings, or even root canal therapy to treat an infection.
While all sugar should be consumed in moderation, chewy candies are one of the most problematic foods. That is because they often stick to the surface of the teeth, allowing bacteria long periods of time to feed on them. Taffies, caramels and other chewy candies are best avoided.
Of course, some hard candies are even so hard that chewing on them can cause the teeth to chip or crack. Plus, they tend to be held in the mouth longer than candies that are easily chewed, such as chocolates, and that allows bacteria more time to create erosive acid. So it’s best to limit candy intake, in general, but be particularly careful about hard or chewy candies.
What Are You Drinking?
Soda is particularly problematic, and that is because it not only contains large amounts of sugar, but it is also carbonated, and that can contribute to erosion, as well.
Think a sports drink is a healthier option? Think again. In some studies, citrus-flavored sports drinks are even more acidic, and therefore dangerous to tooth enamel, than sodas.