Taking great care of your teeth requires more than simply brushing them twice a day.
You should also floss regularly and use mouth wash to keep your teeth and gums clean and free from bacteria that can build up over time and cause decay.
All of those things are essential when it comes to cleaning your teeth and removing excess food particles from your mouth to prevent dental problems. However, they are not the whole picture.
Maintaining great overall dental health and hygiene is as much about what you put into your mouth as it is about the food and bacteria you clean out of it.
When it comes to dental health, not all foods are created equal.
We’ve previously written about foods that are good for your teeth.
Today’s blog post is all about highlighting those foods that pose the greatest risk to your dental health so that you can make better, more informed dietary decisions.
Sugary Foods and Dental Health
Let’s start with the most obvious one and the most well-known food group for dental health problems.
Sugary foods and sugar-filled drinks are one of the leading causes of tooth decay.
This is mainly because bacteria in the mouth can feed on residual sugar that gets left in the mouth, producing corrosive acids as a side effect.
These acids are what cause gradual decay in the teeth they cover.
Sugary foods you should avoid in order to maintain the best dental health include:
- Dried fruits
- Soft drinks
Acidic Foods and Drinks Are Bad For Your Teeth
Foods and drinks which are particularly acidic can also be bad for your teeth.
Over time, these acids work away at the hard enamel that covers the surface of the teeth, exposing the softer tissues underneath to harmful bacteria.
Acidic foods and drinks that could be bad for your teeth include:
- Citric drinks such as orange juice
- Lemons and limes
- Tomato sauces and pastes
An important tip for minimizing the damage that acidic foods and drinks can do to your enamel is to always eat or drink them with water.
Drinking water after eating them helps to remove and dilute the acid left over in the mouth and return the pH to a more neutral level where it cannot harm the tooth enamel.
Coffees, Teas, and Dental Health
While not necessarily harmful to your dental health, certain hot drinks can have a negative effect on your teeth cosmetically.
Some plants, fruits, and leaves contain particles known as tannins.
These tannins are what gives the plant (and the drinks we make from those plants) their color.
When the leaves, beans, and fruits of those plants are mixed with water and other liquids, those tannins partially disperse into the liquid.
When we drink hot drinks like coffee and certain types of tea, we’re also drinking tannins.
Those tannins are completely harmless to our dental and overall health, however, they do pose a potential cosmetic problem for your dental health.
Tannins left in the mouth for a period of time can seep their color into the enamel of the tooth, creating staining.
This staining is not going to harm your teeth in any way, and it is not necessarily a dental problem. If you want to avoid this from happening though, our best advice would be to rinse your mouth with water after drinking black tea or coffee to prevent stain-causing tannins from lingering in the mouth.Leave a reply