Sure, brushing and flossing help get rid of all of the bacteria that sticks to your teeth after eating and drinking, but some food and drinks are way worse than others. While you should always brush and floss, here are some of the food and drinks you should try to consume in moderation to protect your teeth.
- Lemon, Grapefruit, and Citrus in General. Many people turn to fruits when they think about a healthy snack that has nutritional value. However, although these fruits are so packed with vitamin C, they are also extremely acidic which is bad for your enamel. We’re not saying you have to cut them out completely but maybe think twice before sipping on your water with lemon all day or snacking on fruit constantly. Also, the bacteria that cause cavities love an acidic environment!
- Sour Candy. Candy is bad for your teeth; this is a known fact, but sour candy can be even more detrimental. First, many sour candies are also chewy, which can get stuck between your teeth and cause problems. Also, they can contain a higher level of acidity which makes them more hazardous to your teeth. You’re better off with a chocolate bar that you can brush away easier (lesser of two evils though!)
- Ice. Because water is good for your oral health, you might be inclined to think that ice is also good. Water might wash away bad bacteria and help clean out your mouth, but no one just sucks on a piece of ice. It’s the crunch that becomes a problem for your teeth because crunching on ice can cause your enamel to chip or crack. The pros of water don’t outweigh the cons of ice.
- Soda. Soda makes this list for a multitude of reasons. First, the color of soda makes it a candidate to stain your teeth and make them less white. Second, the amount of sugar in a can of soda is always very high. Third, soda with carbonation makes it more likely to stick to your teeth and also dry out your mouth -especially one with caffeine (dehydration). Saliva is essential to your oral health as it naturally clears your mouth of bad bacteria. Lastly, the acidic pH is very harmful to teeth and bacteria that cause decay!
- Bread. You probably expected to see sour candy, soda, and maybe even ice on this list but bread? Bread made the list because of its texture. Bread can easily get stuck between your teeth. Once your saliva breaks down the starch, it turns to sugar which can increase the risk of decay. Other starchy foods like chips, crackers, and pasta, are also lumped into this category.
We’re not suggesting that you never eat any of these foods again. We’re just suggesting that you think about eating them less often, change the WAY you eat them, and remember to brush your teeth right after consuming them. There is no cure for tooth decay but we can help you fight that battle! If you have any questions about diet changes, keeping your teeth healthy, or need to come in for a checkup exam with Dr. Banik and professional cleaning with one of our expert hygienists, contact us as soon as possible. Don’t wait until it hurts or breaks!