28 Jun How These Foods Can Wreck Your Teeth
Every day we brush our teeth, we floss, and we rinse. In our most diligent state, we visit the dentist twice per year for a more thorough cleaning and checkup to ensure the health of our mouth. However, even with the most committed dental hygiene plan in place, there are additional areas of improvement that you may be unaware of. Certain everyday foods and habits can cause damage to teeth without you realizing it. Here are the most common and most surprising of those habits.
Bacteria living on your teeth cause tooth decay. As an ingredient in many foods and beverages, sugar causes these bacteria to release acids that erode the tooth’s enamel. This is one reason sugar has rightly earned its bad rap. We may proactively choose to lower our consumption of sugary sodas and candies, but did you know that all carbohydrate-containing foods are a source of sugar?
The are two types of carbohydrates: simple and complex. Simple sugars are easiest to define as sugar that is added to foods. This may include granulated white sugar, brown sugar, and corn syrup. Simple sugars cling to teeth encouraging acid production that bacteria just love. As bacteria multiply, enamel erosion, tooth decay, and cavities result.
Complex carbohydrates are a different kind of sugar. Nutrient-packed carbohydrates are an excellent source of fiber and starch. The body breaks down carbs in the system, turning to glucose (blood sugar), used by the body as a source of energy. Where carbohydrates can instigate tooth decay is in the absence of effective brushing. Carbs such as bread and pasta can leave food particles between teeth, activating the same acid that causes demineralization or weakening of the tooth.
Forgo the soda and enjoy the spaghetti. Just make sure to brush and floss after every meal.
Obsessing on Oranges
Oranges are a fantastic, power-packed source of vitamin C. The consumption of oranges has multiple health benefits including the potential to reduce the risk of stroke in women. The vitamin C in oranges is also known as ascorbic acid. The pH level in oranges is highly acidic. Enjoy your daily dose of germ-fighting orange juice but follow with a glass of plain old water to flush any residue from teeth. Choose freshly squeezed orange juice over bottled or canned juices which may include added sugars as an ingredient.
Continuously Consuming Cough Drops
Cough drops are heaven sent for sore throats and coughs. It quiets a rasp during meetings, keeps throats hydrated while flying, and the menthol can open nasal passages. One reason cough drops taste good is that they are loaded with sugar and corn syrup. When we eat a cough drop, we tend to let it linger in our mouth, dissolving slowly until gone. The preventive benefits of cough drops are good, but the amount of time the sugar lays on your teeth is not. As with other sugar-containing foods, use a cough drop only when needed and rinse your mouth with water afterward.
Advice on Bad Habits that Wreck Your Teeth
If we tried to avoid every food that had some form of sugar in it, we might not eat at all. Sugar is found naturally in a wide range of foods. Enjoy the health benefits of foods while reducing consumption of sugar-added sweets. Moreover, while we do not want you to overbrush your teeth, take special care to follow the recommended daily regime: brush 2 times per day for 2 minutes each time, floss, and rinse with mouthwash. In-between brushing, drink lots of fresh water to keep your mouth rinsed of damage-causing acids.
Ensure the health of your mouth; call us today to schedule cleaning.
Dr. Dragana Angelova
Imperial Dental Center
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