Avoid These Foods for a Healthier Smile
The best way to maintain healthy teeth and gums is through preventative measures. Although professional teeth whitening, dental crowns, and cosmetic fillings may strengthen and brighten your smile, a better approach is to first avoid stains, tooth decay or a dental emergency. Regular brushing and flossing are great, but you should also stay away from bad food for teeth.
Worst Foods for Teeth
Eating right is not only good for your body it is essential for oral health. The worst foods for teeth can contribute to tooth decay, gum disease, and rob you of your healthy smile.
- Hard Candy: Sucking or biting into hard candy may seem harmless, but if you eat these sugar-laden morsels regularly this habit can lead to tooth decay. In addition, chewing hard candies can result in a dental emergency like a cracked or chipped tooth. A safer option is to chew an ADA approved sugarless gum.
- Chewing Ice: Ice is made of water, but it is not good food for teeth. Chewing ice or any hard surface can damage tooth enamel and lead to a dental emergency. Drink water, don’t eat it.
- Citrus Fruit: Citrus fruits offer great nutrition, but they are foods to avoid for dental health. Over time, repeated exposure to fruit acids can erode precious enamel, leaving teeth more susceptible to decay. So, keep in mind, that adding lemon to the water you sip throughout the day is good for your body, but not great for your healthy smile. Consider drinking plain water most of the time.
- Drinking Coffee: Coffee and tea are not bad drink options, but many people who sip regularly add sugar. Caffeinated versions can cause a dry mouth, and too much consumption may lead to teeth staining. If you are a frequent coffee or tea drinker, avoid adding too much sugar or cream and drink plenty of water.
- Sticky Foods: Some of the worst foods for teeth are anything sticky. Snack items like dried fruits seem like a healthier choice, but they are on the top of the list of bad food for teeth. Sticky items remain on the tooth surface longer and can cause tooth decay. If you eat sticky foods, rinse your mouth out with plain water afterward and wait a half hour to brush and floss.
- Drink Water, Not Soda: Foods to avoid include sugary drinks. Over time, if you sip soda throughout the day, plaque bacteria in your mouth has a feast on the sugar and produces harmful acids that break down teeth enamel. In addition, all carbonated beverages, including sugar-free sodas, contain damaging acid. If you must drink soda, also sip water with it.
- Sports Drinks: Before buying sports drinks, read the labels. Some of these beverages sound healthy, but many are full of sugar. Youth athletes are often encouraged to sip sports drinks when they engage in vigorous activities for long stretches of time; this is often not necessary. Make sure the products you select are low in sugar or drink plain water.