Your diet can have a bigger impact on your oral health than you may realize. Even if you’re diligent with brushing, flossing, and dentist visits, your diet can still cause problems for your teeth. Dr. Daryle J. Mahnke, a dentist in Bay City, MI, specifies some foods you should steer clear of for your oral health.
1. Hard Candy
You probably already know that chewy candy gets stuck in your teeth and causes problems. But hard candy isn’t a suitable substitute. While it doesn’t get stuck in your teeth, it releases sugar the entire time that it dissolves. This feeds harmful oral bacteria in your mouth and they emit an acidic byproduct. This is what leads to tooth decay and dental cavities.
Hard candy can also cause you to need emergency dentistry. If you bite down on the candy before it’s dissolved enough or if it’s at the wrong angle, you can damage your teeth. It can cause things like a break or crack in your tooth. If it’s a simple cosmetic chip, it’s easy to fix. However, if it’s a severe break or crack, it’ll need to be fixed immediately with something like bonding or a dental crown.
2. Dried Fruit
If you’re looking for a non-candy substitute to satisfy your sweet tooth, fruit is a good choice. But you should stick to the fresh kind. Dried fruit is more concentrated with sugar and can lose nutrients in the drying process. It also has the same kind of texture as chewy candy, getting stuck in your teeth. This combination makes it not much better than candy for your teeth.
3. Coffee and Tea
These beverages can have some benefits, but only if you drink them straight, with no additives. People don’t usually drink their coffee or tea without sugars or flavored syrups and additives. These aren’t good to be constantly subjecting your teeth to. These are both dark beverages, which lead to staining on your teeth the more coffee or tea you drink.
Lastly, most varieties of these drinks contain caffeine. Caffeinated beverages can dry out your mouth, depriving it of saliva. Saliva is necessary to help your mouth rinse away bacteria and food particles from your mouth. Frequent dry mouth increases your chance of gum disease and tooth decay.
Water is one of the best things you can consume for your teeth. However, this is only in its liquid form. Chewing on ice is a habit that many people have. The more you do it, the quicker your teeth suffer from wear and tear. Ice also has the same problem as hard candy. If it hasn’t dissolved enough or you bite down at the wrong angle, it can cause serious issues with your teeth.
5. Chips and Crackers
You may not see a high sugar content in the nutritional facts for these foods. But they’re made of starches, that break down into sugars as you chew. Chips are notorious for getting stuck between teeth, while crackers turn into a kind of paste that stays in the crevices in your molars. If you’re going to have one of these salty snacks, make sure you rinse your mouth out with water when you’re done.
Visit Your Bay City, Michigan Dentist
One of the most important things you can do for your oral health is to visit your dentist regularly. They can help you make sure your diet isn’t harming your oral health. Call us or schedule an appointment online.