Sometimes when we inform patients about a cavity, they are shocked, usually responding that they eat or drink healthy foods and beverages. However, many foods and drinks can actually lead to a greater risk of decay, even if at first glance they appear healthy. In today’s blog, we’re going to look at a few of these possibly harmful items.
Fruit Juices and Smoothies
Often, people look for fruit juice or smoothies to replace harmful drinks, such as soda. While these do contain nutrients, they also contain a high amount of sugar. The sugar particles left behind on your smile can be broken down by bacteria in a process that leads to plaque buildup, which increases the likelihood of decay and gingivitis forming. In addition, many fruit drinks and smoothies contain citrus, a highly acidic ingredient that can also wear down tooth enamel. You should also be careful about adding too much lemon or lime to your water, as the citrus content is bad for your smile!
While sports drinks can keep you hydrated, they also contain a high amount of acid, which can wear down tooth enamel and make the onset of cavities for more likely. Even worse is the fact that working out or playing sports tends to dry the mouth, which means you won’t have the usual amount of saliva to help rinse away the sugary/acidic residue left behind on your teeth. We recommend drinking water, which is free of acids and sugars, and also hydrates. If you insist on a sports drink, be sure to chase it with a little water too!
A lot of people enjoy chewing on ice. Unfortunately, ice is pretty tough and an actually increase the risk of chipping or cracking a tooth. Damage to the teeth can eventually allow a cavity and eventually, an infection to form. Avoid chewing on ice, instead just drink a little ice water.
Dried fruits don’t have the high-water content regular fruit does, water that helps cleanse away the sugary particles in fruit. Instead, dried fruit can remain stuck to your teeth, leaving sugar behind for bacteria to consume.
Remember, you don’t have to avoid these items altogether, but be sure to consume them in moderation and always take time to properly brush and floss your teeth!
Do You Need a Checkup?
To make sure your smile is healthy, be sure to schedule a checkup and cleaning! To schedule an appointment, call Viva Dental Family Dentistry at (214) 337-7800 (Dallas) or (972) 437-6000 (Richardson).