Since our first visit to the dentist, whether that be forty years ago or six months ago, we’ve been taught that brushing our teeth & flossing daily is absolutely crucial in certifying our oral health. However, the secret to healthy teeth goes beyond basic hygiene! The food we intake has a massive impact on our teeth — for better or for worse. With the holidays quickly approaching and sugary sweets awaiting us, we’ve outlined some of the best and worst foods for your teeth!
Apples, Celery, & Carrots
You know what they say, an apple a day keeps the doctor dentist away! Apples, celery, and carrots are wonderful for your teeth — they’re full of fiber and are great at scrubbing away plaque build-up on the surface of our teeth. Additionally, the fiber and water found in these foods help to balance the mouth’s sugars.
Eggs are packed full of calcium, protein, phosphorous, and vitamin D — all minerals that are essential for oral health. High amounts of protein found in eggs can help protect your teeth from cavity-causing acids!
Cheese, Milk, Yogurt — Delicious Dairy!
Dairy products are a favorite among many people, and the good news is that dairy products often provide essential nutrients that your teeth and bones need to thrive! Dairy products are strong sources of calcium, phosphorous, casein, and vitamin D. These type of minerals neutralize acids produced by bacteria!
While often not a favorite among kids (or hey, even adults), leafy vegetables like broccoli, kale, and spinach are teeth-friendly foods that are full of folic acids and plenty of vitamins — all of which support healthy teeth and gums.
Simply put, sugar isn’t the greatest for your teeth. Why is that? On a very basic level, microorganisms naturally found in your mouth convert sugars into acid — acid in turn causes tooth decay by wearing away at the enamel found on the surface of your teeth! While it’s completely unnecessary and impractical for most individuals to cut out sugar from their diet, there are some obvious culprits that when eaten in excess, can greatly affect your wonderful smile!
Regular soda, coffee with added sugars, sweetened waters, sports drinks, the list goes on. Drinks full of sugar are a tooth’s worst nightmare! Instead, opt for sugar-free drinks or water to quench your thirst.
Just like sugary drinks, candy is an obvious offender. When consumed in excess, the sugar in candy can cause cavities and other dental hygiene issues! The chewiness of candy can also prove to be an issue, as portions of candy may get stuck in the crevices of the mouth, leading to bacteria build-up.
Chips, Bread, & Pasta — The Starches
Chips, bread, & pasta are often cornerstones in the diets of Americans! Unfortunately for us, these foods are chock-full of starches. Starches can be broken down into sugars in the mouth, which can lead to cavity formation and other dental hygiene issues.
The Bottom Line
This list of foods isn’t meant to keep you or your child away from ever eating anything sugary or tasty again! More than anything, this list serves as a reminder that excess of these foods can cause issues in the future. We believe that it’s important that you are aware of how food can affect your oral health. By limiting the ‘bad’ and focusing on the ‘good’, we can help ensure that you and your child maintain your healthy smiles!