Maintaining good oral health is essential for overall health. It prevents a variety of dental problems like gum disease, tooth decay, cavities, etc. Listed below are the worst foods for your oral health:
Eating or drinking too much sugar is bad for your body and not just your teeth! It can lead to weight gain and obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and even some types of cancer. But did you know it’s also bad for your oral health? The more sugar you eat, the more bacteria in your mouth will thrive on it and create acid that wears away tooth enamel. Cavities are another example of the negative impact of sugar on your oral health. Many patients who consume large amounts of sugar drink more acidic beverages like soda, which also accelerates tooth decay. To avoid cavities and maintain good oral health, limit your consumption of sweets and sugary drinks.
This sticky candy can get stuck in your teeth and gums, which can lead to tooth decay. A lot of sugar in candy also weakens your tooth enamel, leading to cavities. Hard candies can also chip your teeth if you bite them too hard. Biting into hard sweets can also cause cracks and fractures in our teeth. A cracked tooth can cause you a lot more pain than a cavity – so avoid chewing on hard candy altogether!
Sugary beverages include soft drinks, sports drinks, and energy drinks, which all contain a high amount of sugar and acid. These drinks can lead to tooth decay and cavities due to the concentrated sugars and acids that wear away tooth enamel. Water is the best drink choice for a healthier smile.
Plus, your general oral health is impacted by high-sugar diets. Bacteria in the mouth feed on the sugars in food and drink to release acids as a food source. Acids from oral bacteria can damage tooth enamel and slowly decay teeth. The more often you consume foods that are high in sugar, the more your teeth are at risk for cavities and gum disease.
Additionally, acidic foods and beverages can harm the teeth. This includes citrus fruits and juices, wine, coffee, and tea. Acidic foods and drinks can wear away the protective surface of teeth, which makes them more susceptible to bacteria and decay.
Coffee and Tea
Caffeinated beverages are some of the most common beverages consumed in the United States. They can pose a number of risks to your oral health that you should be aware of.
The acid in coffee and tea can cause tooth enamel erosion over time. This weakens the protective outer layer of your teeth and allows tooth decay to occur more easily. Enamel is the hardest substance in the human body! So don’t let it erode away so easily.
In addition to causing tooth enamel erosion, the caffeine in coffee and tea can also dry out the mouth. Saliva is your body’s natural defense against oral bacteria. If you consistently have a dry mouth, you are more susceptible to gum disease. Drinking plenty of water can help prevent dry mouth.
Finally, if you drink coffee or tea on a regular basis, consider cutting back or avoiding it completely. These drinks can stain your teeth, which is a cosmetic issue. Plus, the more staining that occurs, the longer professional whitening treatments will need to be performed.
While a glass or two of wine each night may help relax you, too much alcohol of any kind is harmful to your health. It can also lead to dry mouth, which can increase tooth decay and the risk of gum disease. But if you must indulge, be sure to rinse with water afterward to wash away sugars from your teeth. Avoid swishing or holding wine in your mouth because it creates more contact between sugar and teeth, potentially leading to damage. You should also wait an hour after you drink to enjoy food because the acid in wine can soften the enamel on your teeth, making them more susceptible to attacks from bacteria that cause cavities. If you do have a meal after drinking, choose something starchy like bread to help neutralize acids. And limit your drinks to one or two glasses per day—your body will thank you!
If you eat any of these foods often, remember that moderation is key for oral health. It’s important to brush twice a day for two minutes at a time and floss once a day to remove trapped food and plaque. You can also schedule regular cleanings and exams with your dentist to keep your mouth healthy in between visits.
A sports drink may seem like a smart choice after exercising or playing a sport in the heat of summer. But in reality, these drinks contain a ton of sugar and additives that can harm your teeth. Even diet versions of sports drinks are not a healthy option.
In fact, many dentists do not recommend drinking sports drinks due to their acidity and sugar content. Drinking sports drinks and sodas can increase the risk of tooth decay and enamel erosion. Instead of grabbing a sports drink, try water instead! Water is sugar-free and neutral on the pH scale, helping to prevent erosion of tooth enamel.
Citrus Fruits and Juices
Orange juice, grapefruit juice, and other citrus products are very acidic and can erode tooth enamel. The stomach acids from these foods can also weaken the protective surface of teeth, making them more susceptible to the effects of decay. If consumed in excess, citrus fruit juices can also lead to frequent heartburn or acid reflux. It is important to keep in mind that even some natural, unsweetened fruit juices can be damaging to your oral health. We recommend limiting your consumption of all fruit juices.
To learn more, call (719) 471-1900 or schedule an online consultation. You can also visit Dentist in Colorado Springs, CO, at 1705 N Weber St, Colorado Springs, CO 80907.