A cold soda on a hot day or a few pieces of candy for dessert may satisfy your cravings, but sugary drinks and snacks don’t do any favors for your teeth. Sugar isn’t the only thing that harms your teeth either, and while brushing and flossing twice a day helps stave off tooth decay and gum disease, it’s best to avoid the very worst foods out there. If you’re willing to alter your diet to enjoy stronger tooth enamel, try skipping over these 10 tooth-threatening drinks and snacks.
Let’s start with a no-brainer. Candy of any variety – hard or chewy, sweet or sour – is bad for your teeth. So much sugar lingering in your mouth gives bacteria plenty of time to feed and start attacking the outer layer of tooth enamel.
Drinking full-sugar soda is a major cause of cavities and, surprisingly to many people, so is diet soda. After all, even though diet soda contains artificial sweeteners instead of the real thing, they still contain citric acid and phosphoric acid, both of which erode tooth enamel when consumed often.
This one is a surprise to many people because dried fruit is often touted as a healthy alternative to candy. While it’s certainly an improvement, dried fruit still contains plenty of sugar. Plus, the sticky properties of dried fruit allow this sugar to remain in contact with your teeth for hours and slowly erode your enamel away.
Coffee and Tea
These dark-colored drinks can stain teeth, especially considering that you tend to drink them in the morning after you have already brushed your teeth. When this is the case, coffee and tea remnants linger on your teeth all day before you brush and floss again at night.
The acid found in fruit juices and red and white wine can wear down tooth enamel over time, leading to tooth decay and the development of sensitive teeth. Enjoy these beverages only in moderation and use a straw if possible to reduce contact with your teeth.
The acid in pickles also spells bad news for your teeth. Vinegar is a vital ingredient in pickled food, and this is what causes enamel erosion and tooth staining when you eat pickles.
Sports and Energy Drinks
These beverages are tougher on your teeth than you might think. They often contain a lot of citric acid and sugar, a bad combination if you want to keep your teeth healthy and strong.
Even in healthy fruits, citric acid strikes again. Enjoy the occasional orange or grapefruit at breakfast, but avoid putting lemon or lime in your water to keep tooth erosion throughout the day to a minimum.
White bread and crackers contain processed carbs, which are really just sugar in disguise. An enzyme in your saliva called salivary amylase converts the carbs in white bread and crackers into sugar. As if this wasn’t bad enough, overconsumption of refined carbs also causes inflammation, a key component in the development of oral diseases such as gingivitis and periodontitis.
Saliva is a very important defense against bacteria on your teeth. If your mouth dries out, more bacteria can thrive there. Alcohol is a drying substance, so if you already suffer from dry mouth, even a drink or two is enough to make your condition worse and leave your teeth susceptible to bacterial invasion.
In addition to avoiding these tooth-harming drinks and snacks, be sure to visit the dentist every six months for a cleaning and checkup. To schedule your appointment, please contact Evanson DDS online or call us at (720) 409-0008.Leave a reply →