Many of our patients don’t realize that what we consume can affect our oral health. We depend on our teeth to chew food so that we can absorb nutrients. When we consume sugary foods or drinks, the acids from the foods and drinks can erode the enamel of our teeth. This leaves the dentin layer of our teeth exposed. This layer of dentin is porous, which makes it susceptible to decay. Additionally, eating lots of acidic foods and drinks can irritate the gums, which can lead to gum disease.
Here is a list of common foods and drinks that can affect our oral health and lead to tooth decay and cavities.
- Sticky candies
Sticky candies can stick to your teeth, creating the perfect environment for bad bacteria to flourish. Sugary foods – especially sticky candies – increase your risk of tooth decay. This can also lead to a sore, swollen, and tender gum line. Although mild cases of gum disease can be reversed, it’s best to avoid sticky candies altogether.
- Hard candy
Hard candy often contains high levels of sugar. This can cause tooth decay and other problems. Hard candies can also promote tooth grinding. If you or your kid grinds their teeth, you should talk to your dentist about wearing a mouth guard at night.
The worst food for your gum health is soda. Soda drinks, including cola, diet, and sugar-free varieties, can erode the enamel on your teeth. Additionally, the high acid content of soda drinks can cause the enamel on your teeth to weaken, which can increase your risk of tooth decay.
- Sports drinks
Sports drinks contain citric acid, or ascorbic acid, which is highly acidic and bad for your tooth enamel and gums. Sports drinks are also full of sugar, making them one of the worst beverages for your oral health. These beverages can increase your risk of tooth decay, cavities, gum disease, and other oral health problems.
If you enjoy drinking coffee for the energy boost or ritual experience, you may be disappointed to learn it can cause irreversible damage to your teeth. The dark liquid can stain your teeth, and it can also weaken the enamel of your teeth.
The sugars in wine can feed the oral bacteria that cause tooth decay and gum disease. Red wine also contains tannins, which can stain your teeth. These stains are difficult to remove, and they can also discolor a white filling.
Ice is one of the worst things you can consume when it comes to your oral health. Ice is extremely hard and can cause your dental enamel to chip or wear away.
- Citrus fruits
Citrus fruits like lemons and limes are acidic, and they can also irritate your gum tissues. Acidic foods and drinks wear down and weaken your tooth enamel, and this can lead to tooth sensitivity. If you eat citrus fruits, also be sure to rinse your mouth and brush your teeth right after.
Call us at (360) 855-0351 to book your appointment with our expert dentists to have us care for your oral health. Or you can visit our dental clinic located at 830 Metcalf St, Sedro-Woolley, WA 98284.