Some of the foods and drinks that we consume each day may be things that we consider safe or healthy for us. Unfortunately, they may hide ingredients that can damage your tooth enamel.
Making smart choices about your daily diet can help you live healthier and reduce your risk of tooth decay.
Your Teeth Are What You…Drink
Liquids can be especially harmful to your mouth, mostly because they have easy access to just about every surface area that there is. The deep grooves and pits easily collect sugars and acids that begin eating away at your tooth enamel.
Which drinks are the worst? It might surprise you, but sports drinks and diet soda can cause rampant tooth decay, thanks to the artificial sweeteners that they contain.
Even common drinks like coffee and tea can cause dry mouth, due to their caffeine content. Dryer mouths are more prone to cavities, making the cycle continue. Don’t forget alcohol consumption. The sugars may stay on your teeth all night long if you don’t brush before bed, and the adult beverages also increase your risk for oral cancer.
A Sticky Situation
Sticky foods, even if regarded as “healthy,” will cling to your teeth for an extended period of time. Dried fruits are one example. Although they are high in fiber, the stickiness allows natural sugars to have prolonged contact with your teeth. Potato chips aren’t very sticky, but their starch content can cause plaque to stick to your teeth for hours after you eat them.
Prevention Is Important
From time to time, we’re all going to enjoy foods like these. Cutting them completely out of your diet may not be an option, but they can be limited. If you do enjoy a diet soda, rinse your mouth thoroughly with water afterward. Trail mix? Keep a toothbrush handy afterward.
Regular [preventive] care appointments help us identify weak areas of tooth enamel before they become too significant. Fluoride may be necessary to help reverse initial damage in its early stages. Schedule your cleaning and exam every six months to maintain strong, healthy teeth.