Best and Worst Foods for Your Teeth

Your Oral Health and Your Diet 

When talking about your oral health, the best medicine is prevention. Having crowns, fillings and professional teeth whitening can make your teeth brighter and stronger, it is much more beneficial in the long run to avoid cavities and staining to the best of your ability. You can do this by properly flossing, brushing and eating right. The foods we eat can have a major impact on our oral health. Many people think all candies damage our teeth; this is not true. Candy is generally harmless within moderation. It becomes an issue when we are eating something excessively. Keep reading to learn more about the best and worst foods for your teeth.

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Worst Foods for Your Teeth  

There is a long list of foods that are not the best for your teeth. One of the most common being citrus fruit. While citrus fruits are a great source of nutrients and vitamin c and have other benefits, they do not benefit your oral healthLemon juice and grapefruit are extremely acidic which means they can break down tooth enamel over periods of time. A study from 2008 which soaked teeth in multiple citrus juices showed lemon and grapefruit did the most damage while orange juice caused the least.   

Chewy and hard candies are also at the top of the list for one of the worse foods for your oral health. Usually, the stickier the candy the worse it is for your teeth. Certain chewy candies such as caramels, jujuy fruits, and taffy tend to stick to your teeth for an extended period which allow bacteria into our mouth to feast on the leftover sugar. Hard candies don’t have the same effect as chewy candies in terms of sticking to your teeth, but they have their own disadvantage, when they slowly dissolve for many minutes at a time this gives bacteria more time to develop harmful acids. Many flavored candies are flavored with citric acids. Hard candies can also chip your teeth which brushing, and flossing cannot attend to.  

An item many may not suspect to be bad for your teeth is pickles. Pickles are made with vinegar which is an acid. The vinegar is what gives pickles their salty, sour taste and what also makes them a danger to tooth enamel. A study done in 2004 looked at the eating habits of some teenagers, out of all the solid foods they consumed pickles were linked to tooth wear. If you eat them more than once a day the odds of wear increase by 85%. 

Best Foods for Your Teeth 

Water is on the top of the list as being beneficial for your teeth. Water just like saliva assists with washing acid and sugar off teeth. Fluoride is also in water which is a mineral that helps protect against the erosion of teeth and it is also found in some mouthwashes and toothpastes. Fluoride occurs in water naturally including some brands of bottled spring water, and in most tap water in the United States.  

A primary source of calcium from milk and other dairy products is essential for healthy teeth. Hydroxyapatite, also known as calcium, strengthens bones as well as tooth enamel. Teeth are not bones but they share some of the same properties. Dairy products, more predominately cheese contain casein, a protein. Research shows calcium, along with casein play a crucial role in repairing and stabilizing tooth enamel.  

High-fiber foods such as leafy vegetables promote healthy cholesterol levels along with good digestion, they also are great for your teeth because they require a lot of chewing. All the chewing generates saliva and the food scrubs your teeth while it is being chewed.    

If you have any questions about the best and worst foods for your teeth or want to schedule an appointment feel free to contact us today for a free consultation, and don’t forget to like us on Facebook! 

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