You faithfully brush your teeth and floss regularly. You visit your dentist in Annapolis every six months as you should. But what about the impact your diet could have on your oral health? You may be doing everything else right, but your eating habits can be the downfall of your smile. Lee, Bonfiglio, Vesley, and Associates points out five foods you should avoid or limit to keep a healthier smile.
1. Hard Candy
You’ve probably been told to avoid chewy candy because it gets stuck in your teeth. But hard candy shouldn’t be reached for as a substitute. Hard candy takes a long time to dissolve, constantly releasing sugar into your mouth as it does. Sugar is what the harmful bacteria in your mouth feed on, releasing acid as a byproduct. This acid burrows through the enamel on your teeth, causing tooth decay.
There are other issues with hard candy as well. Biting down on the candy at the wrong angle or before it’s dissolved enough can crack or chip your tooth. This can lead to an office visit for emergency dentistry services. Even if you chew the candy when it’s dissolved enough, that leads to it being stuck on your teeth. It may take a long time to dissolve fully.
2. Dried Fruit
Fruit can be a good alternative to candy for a sweet snack. Just make sure you stick to the fresh variety. Dried fruit is concentrated with sugar and also has the same sticky consistency as chewy candy. This means it easily gets stuck between the teeth or in the crevices of your molars, providing a feeding ground for bacteria.
3. Citrus Fruit
Citrus fruit can also be a problem. It’s extremely acidic, leading to it eroding your enamel every time you have some. Even adding lemon to your water exposes your teeth to harmful acids. If you’re going to have some, make sure you have plain water to wash out your mouth afterward. Never brush your teeth directly after, as it can actually increase the speed at which your enamel wears away when combined with the acid.
Today’s coffee drinks are often loaded with sugary syrups and flavorings. Even when it’s coffee you drink at home, sweetened creamer or sugar is usually added. Too much caffeine can also cause dry mouth, making you more susceptible to bacteria without saliva washing them away. Lastly, coffee, tea, and other dark beverages can stain your teeth. This can take professional teeth whitening to solve.
While water is great for your oral health, you should avoid it in its frozen form. Even when ice is melted down a bit, a habit of chewing on ice can cause wear and tear on your teeth. If the ice is still hard and solid, there’s a chance that you can even chip or break your teeth.
Checkups at Your Annapolis Dentist
If you’re worried about your oral health, head to Lee, Bonfiglio, Vesely, and Associates for a thorough checkup. Call us today or schedule an appointment online.