Your diet can play a big part in your oral health. Even if you’re faithfully going to your bi-annual checkups and cleanings and are brushing regularly at home, certain foods can cause problems with your teeth. Dr. Brock W. Hyder of Payette Dental, a dentist in Payette, ID, discusses foods you should avoid to keep your smile healthy.
1. Hard Candy
You may already know that chewy candy is something to avoid. Sugar is the main cause of tooth decay and the need for dental fillings, and chewy candy gets stuck in your teeth. However, hard candy isn’t a replacement for your sweet tooth.
Hard candy may not get stuck in your teeth, but it takes a long time to dissolve. The entire time that it’s dissolving, it’s releasing sugar into your mouth. Harmful oral bacteria are feeding on these sugars constantly, releasing an acidic byproduct the whole time. This byproduct eats through the enamel on your teeth. The longer it takes the candy to dissolve, the more this byproduct is being released.
2. Dried Fruit
Fruit is usually a good choice for a sweet snack. But you should stick to the fresh variety. Dried fruit is often sticky and concentrated with a lot of sugar compared to fresh fruit. This makes it similar in texture and content to chewy candy. You don’t want to get this wedged in between your teeth and in the crevices of your molars.
3. Sports Drinks
When you’re drinking sports drinks, you may think you’re choosing something better than soda. But sports drinks are hiding a lot of added sugars behind that “healthy” facade. Sports drinks can contain as much — or more — sugar than soda and energy drinks. They’re often flavored with citric acid as well, which can wear away the enamel on your teeth.
Water is one of the best things you can drink for your oral health. But that’s when it’s in its liquid form. Many people have the habit of chewing on ice. This increases the wear and tear on your teeth. It makes them wear down faster than they would normally.
Chewing on ice can also lead to a dental emergency. If you bite down on ice when it’s too thick or at the wrong angle, it can have serious consequences. You may chip, crack, or break your tooth. Something like this may need anything from dental bonding to a dental crown to make sure your tooth is fixed properly.
5. Chips and Crackers
You probably don’t think of sugar when you’re eating salty snacks. But they’re both made up of starches, which break down into sugars quickly as they’re chewed. Chips get stuck between teeth and crackers turn into a kind of paste that sticks to the top of your teeth. Both of these things can linger for a long time, creating problem areas that attract bacteria.
Your Dentist in Payette, Idaho
An important part of ensuring your diet isn’t harming your teeth is to go to your dentist regularly. Call us or schedule an appointment online!