Dental Blog

Foods to Eat and Avoid for Healthy Teeth and Gums

Monday, May 1, 2017

Prevention is always the best way to keep your smile shining.

Some simple ways to keep your mouth healthy are: brush your teeth, floss, and watch what you eat. Not everyone wants to have multiple visits to the dentist for fillings and crowns, so following some easy tips, like what to eat and avoid can have a huge impact. You already know to avoid sugary snacks and drinks, which are safe in moderation, but some foods to avoid may surprise you!

THE GOOD
Gum can get a bad rap as it is usually high in sugar, but chewing sugar-free gum on a regular basis can actually promote good oral health. The chewing causes an increase in saliva, which helps wash away acids and bacteria. It can even lather your teeth in calcium and phosphates.

Water is a given when it comes to good oral health. Just like your natural saliva, it can help wash away unwanted acid and sugar from your teeth. Because it contains fluoride naturally, it helps protect against tooth erosion.

We know fruits like apples can help strengthen oral health, but fruits like strawberries are also great. They contain malic acid, which is a natural enamel whitener. Instead of whitening your teeth professionally with various chemicals that may harm your teeth, you can make your own at-home whitening treatment with some strawberries and baking soda!

THE BAD
Citrus foods may be high in vitamins and nutrients, but because of how acidic they are, they can erode your teeth’s enamel over time. Grapefruit and lemon juice are the two worst that you can have, but it isn’t all bad news for people who like citrus drinks. Orange juice fortified with calcium and vitamin D is good, but it’s important to brush and floss as directed.

What may be surprising to some are just how bad sports drinks are for your teeth. They may seem like a good alternative to soda or energy drinks, but they are also acidic and can be very damaging to overall oral health.

Another common drink that can be harmful to your teeth is tea. While coffee can stain your teeth, it’s less known that some teas can do this as well. Black tea is high in tannin, which can promote staining, but herbal teas, which have much less tannin, can also be harmful. Some herbal teas can actually erode enamel much more than black tea.

Source: http://www.health.com/health/gallery/0,,20687551,00.html