Fresh fruit and vegetables, brightly colored clothes and days spent in the sun are most people's favorite parts of the summer months. But while soaking up rays and munching on the season's goodies, many people aren't thinking about the impact that foods and drinks they are consuming can have on their teeth.
There are a number of types of food and beverages that are bad for your teeth, but there are just as many that are great for supporting strong enamel. The great news is that, like most anything, these 'bad foods' are fine in moderation.
Here are some good foods:
- Dairy – This is sort of a no-brainer considering dairy is the primary source of calcium for most people. Calcium helps support clean and healthy teeth. It also aids in developing strong bones, so drink your milk and eat your yogurt and cheese for super strong teeth.
- Fiber – From leafy greens to legumes, high-fiber foods are great for a lot of different health benefits. They help with digestion, cholesterol and work wonders on your teeth.
- Strawberries – While you may think that strawberries will stain your teeth, the opposite is actually true! According to ABC News Health, strawberries contain malic acid, which whitens teeth. The source recommends mixing a mashed strawberry (or two) with baking soda for an at-home whitening treatment.
- Water – A little H2O keeps you healthy. That fact extends to your teeth too, because water will help wash off sugars and acid from your teeth, and will help protect your enamel from erosion.
Now, some of the foods you should avoid for dazzling dentition:
- Candy – Both hard and chewy candies are bad for your teeth. They stick between and to the surface of your teeth and allow bacteria to grow and live off of the sugars. Sour gummies are especially bad because they are also erosive.
- Citrus – In moderation, citrus fruits are fine, but eat too many of these refreshing nectars, and you will start to feel the impact. The highly acidic nature of these fruits and juices tends to erode your enamel. Orange juice is the least harmful, according to a number of studies, with fortified, store-bought varieties being the best option for tooth health.
- Coffee – Any beverage that would stain a white tablecloth will stain your teeth. So coffee, red wine, most sports drinks and soda are all bad for your dental hygiene. Sports drinks and soda are sugary and can breed cavities, while wine and coffee will discolor your tooth surfaces.
- Crackers – Because they are made of refined carbohydrates, these scrumptious snacks quickly turn to sugars when consumed. These sugars are bad for tooth health, and the crackers – which become mushy when eaten – tend to cling to your teeth.
- Pickles – Though a seemingly strange addition to this list, pickles, like any other vinegary food, have a lot of acid in them. According to ABC News Health, "In one 2004 study that looked at the eating habits of English teenagers, pickles were the solid food most closely linked with tooth wear. Eating them more than once a day increased the odds of wear by about 85 percent."
Like we mentioned, any of these foods and beverages are great in moderation, but too much can cause damage.
The best way to repair damage that has already been done and prevent further issues is to contact and consult with dentists or dental orthodontists. If you are interested in learning more about teeth health or treatment options, contact Upper Eastside Orthodontists today.