Taking care of your teeth is fairly straightforward: brush twice daily with a fluoride toothpaste, floss at least once a day, and visit your dentist every six months (or as needed). But there’s one more thing that has a big impact on your oral health that simply can’t be ignored: your diet.
What you eat and drink can affect the health of your teeth and gums, along with your breath. Certain foods can also increase your risk of cavities. In fact, eliminating these 4 things from your diet might help you keep your mouth cavity-free and healthier than ever.
1. Acidic drinks.
Acidic drinks contain acids that can wear away tooth enamel and cause decay. While this includes obvious offenders like soda, alcohol, energy drinks, and coffee, it also includes some more surprising culprits like sports drinks, citrus juices, and even kombucha. Many of these drinks also contain lots of sugar, making them doubly bad for your teeth and overall oral health.
Candy, especially hard or sticky candy, not only gives your mouth a not-so-healthy dose of sugar, but it also contains a type of sugar that sticks to your teeth. Bacteria in the mouth feeds off this sugar, which exacerbates tooth decay and leads to cavities. Plus, candies are empty calories that offer no nutritional value to the body.
3. Dried fruit.
It sounds like a healthy alternative to candy, but in reality, it behaves very similarly when it comes to tooth health. Dried fruit (e.g. raisins) has had all the water taken out of it, making it stickier, while preserving all the natural sugars. Those sticky sugars can stay on your teeth long after you’re done snacking.
4. Pasta and other simple starches.
Simple starches convert to sugar very quickly after eating, and, like other offenders on this list, are prone to sticking to teeth, so their negative effects last long past meal times. Foods in this category include traditional pastas, white bread, white rice, and many varieties of crackers.
Eliminating these things from your diet can benefit your oral health and help you avoid pesky cavities. Fresh fruits and vegetables are good for your teeth and the rest of your body, so be sure to incorporate more of those into your diet, and don’t forget to drink water! Contact Smile Concepts today, Scottsdale’s top family dentist to schedule an appointment for everything your smile needs.