Before picking up your fork, you should know a few tips about how to manage the foods that are bad for your teeth. You may be thinking, why should I care? Foods that are bad for your teeth cause more than just cavities. A prime example would be the day you are on your lunch break during work and you decide to indulge in pasta. After your meal, you have a meeting, and while you sit there you can’t stop brushing your teeth with your tongue to remove the leftovers. Pasta is a high carb food that is more likely to cause plaque. This embarrassing situation could have been prevented with a toothbrush or saving the pasta enjoyment for after work. Luckily, you’ve come to the right place to learn what foods are bad for teeth according to top dental offices.
Foods to Avoid to Keep Teeth Healthy
- Hard Candy
Did you know that most hard candy is flavored with citric acid? Citric acid will burn through tooth enamel if it stays on teeth. Most hard candy is designed to suck on and this causes acidic bacteria the chance to soak on your teeth. Without the appropriate amount of saliva you risk not washing away the acid and this can be detrimental to dental health. Chocolate candies are usually better for teeth since it doesn’t stick the same way that acidic candy does. If you choose to indulge in hard candy, it’s important to remember to drink water afterwards, or brush your teeth.
Citrus is both a friend and enemy. It’s important to know that not all citrus fruits are at the same acidic level. For instance, grapefruits are more acidic than oranges; lemons and limes are the most acidic. You might also be familiar with the home remedy for teeth whitening using lemons. If you chose to use lemon juice for a tooth whiting it’s important to know that it’s high in acidity. You MUST rinse your mouth with water after this cleaning. If you have teeth whiting concerns it’s a good idea to consult with your dentist. Overall, citrus is good for you and it provides vitamin C for your diet.
- Sticky Food
Pasta, rice, bread, and potatoes are all examples of food that stick to teeth. All of these delicious foods should be consumed cautiously. Meals that are high in carbohydrates will cause faster plaque buildup. Just remember to brush after eating and drink plenty of water
- Crunchy Snack Food
Chips, crackers, and pretzels are very tasty snacks, but contain a high amount of sugar and carbs that will stick to teeth. Most of the time these foods will get stuck in between teeth without you realizing that it’s there. You can go most of the day with these food particles stuck and this will erode teeth quicker. It’s important to know that if you are prone to dry mouth, you are at an even higher risk for cavities. This is due to a lack of saliva that is essential to naturally washing away these food particles.
- Dried Fruit
Fresh grapes are very good for you, but after drying them into raisins they can be cavity culprits. Dried fruit in some ways is actually worse than candy. This is due to a high number of non-soluble cellulose fibers found in fruit that will make sugar gooey and sticky on teeth. It’s important to brush after eating these dried delectable treats to avoid cavities.
Most people don’t know that popcorn is good at creating lactic acid in your mouth. It’s also very hard to floss out popcorn kernels and if left in between teeth they can cause a painful infection.
What Sugar Does to Your Mouth
It’s important to know that sugar by itself is not corrosive to tooth enamel. What makes sugar dangerous is actually the bacteria in plaque that forms. These bacteria will grow in thickness and amount if left on enamel. People who have dry mouth are more susceptible to plaque. It’s important to drink plenty of water to avoid build up. If plaque sticks to teeth for too long it will eventually not wash away and you will need to brush your teeth.