The foods you eat directly correlate to your health in many ways. This is especially true for your oral health. In the same way that eating a lot of the wrong foods leads to being an unhealthy weight level, eating and drinking certain foods can cause a lot of plaque. Plaque can be detrimental to both the appearance and physical condition of your teeth and other areas of the mouth.
Some of the foods and drinks that can cause problems with your oral health are more obvious than others, so we’ve laid out below a list for you to explore.
Here are 10 Foods That Are Bad For Your Teeth:
- Bread – Though bread is such a staple in many peoples’ diets, white bread especially can actually be a heavy-hitting cavity causer. This is because as you consume it, bread breaks down like a sticky, gummy mass from starch to sugar. As you chew it, the bread can easily get stuck in between teeth. This then can cause the formation of cavities. Opt for carbs with a lesser amount of sugar. Look for the labels “whole grain” and “whole wheat” for the best results next time you shop. Just like bread, other foods with starches such as crackers and chips are also filled with starch.
- Alcohol – Whatever your drink of choice is, any drink that contains alcohol is going to have negative side effects on your oral health and more when consumed excessively. Limiting alcohol consumption is important because regular drinking has the possibility to reduce your saliva flow and dry out your mouth. Production of saliva is important to your oral health because it creates a shield for your teeth that protects against acids in your mouth that break down food. It is also a natural washer of food and debris from your teeth and gums among other helpful benefits. Remember that the best drink is always water.
- Ice – Chewing on ice can actually be very bad for your teeth. Though it may only be frozen water, crunching down on a substance as hard as ice causes damage to the enamel and leads to the possibility of damaging your teeth even to the point of them breaking. It also can damage dental work done on teeth previously such as a crown. Bottom line: ice is fine in your drink, not in your mouth.
- Citrus – Citrus fruits and juices are popular because of their tasty flavors and health benefits. However, the acidic content within citrus is harmful to your oral health. This is because the acid is strong enough that it erodes your enamel, leaving your teeth more at risk to decay. The acid can also easily irritate mouth sores. Citrus fruits and drinks are best consumed in moderation and should be enjoyed with water at the same time as or after consumption.
- Hard Candies – Not only are these treats giving you constant exposure to sugar when you are sucking on them, biting down in the wrong way could easily lead to dental emergencies like broken or fractured teeth. Keeping consumption to a minimum is highly recommended. Opt for sugarless gum or a similar counterpart.
- Kombucha and Vinegar Based Drinks – Similar to citrus, vinegar-based substances can contain highly acidic levels. This leads to erosion of your enamel as well as a loss of helpful minerals. They can also cause discoloration on teeth similar to dark drinks such as coffee and wine. So, watch out for kombucha and related drinks as they can be just as harmful as sodas to your oral health. Opt for green or black tea instead.
- Dried Fruits – Dried fruits may be a healthy alternative to other sweet snacks, but in terms of oral health, they are not the greatest. This is because of the sticky consistency of dried fruit. This stickiness helps particles get stuck on, around, and within the cervices of your teeth. The sugar from these products will then be stuck and decay bad enough to become a cavity. To help combat this, we recommend rinsing, brushing, and flossing after eating dried fruits, diminishing the chances of decay. Fresh fruits are always a better option, because of the lesser concentration of sugar.
- Sports and Energy Drinks – Though usually marketed as being healthy, sports and energy drinks are just as bad as soda when it comes to the health of your teeth. Whatever benefits they may have during physical activities, these drinks are absolutely loaded with sugar. These drinks are like bathing your teeth with sugar. The best alternative to this is to just stick with water.
- Tomato-Based Foods – The acid level within tomatoes and tomato-based foods may be more than you think. Foods that contain tomatoes and sauces like pasta sauce, ketchup, salsa, etc. can damage your teeth due to the high acidic levels of tomatoes. You can keep your smile shining by limiting your intake of these foods and keeping up with proper dental care.
- Coffee – Though coffee in its natural form is actually a very healthy option, adding sugar and other sweeteners can make it detrimental to your oral health. Caffeinated coffee can also dry out your mouth, leading to problems with saliva production as mentioned earlier with alcohol. Coffee can also stain your teeth, so be sure to drink plenty of water with it. Keeping additives to a minimum is the key to drinking coffee without jeopardizing your oral health.
Here at Capozzi Dental, we want to help you with your oral health. Contact us today for an appointment. Regular dentist visits help to prevent serious teeth problems before they cause pain. You can prevent the majority of dental problems by flossing, brushing with fluoride toothpaste, and having your teeth professionally cleaned twice a year.