When it’s warm outside we all enjoy our favorite warm weather foods and beverages! Have you ever considered how some of these affect your smile? You may be surprised. Here’s a short list of foods that can do some damage to your teeth if you’re not thoughtful about it.
Warm Weather Foods To Be Aware Of
Some of the things we eat during the summer are terrible for teeth. Regular dental care can keep your teeth healthy, but what you eat matters too. Food can have a big impact on overall mouth health. Here are some foods to avoid this summer.
1. Iced Coffee
Many people not only start the day drinking iced coffee, but continue to sip on it throughout the day. Because your teeth are very porous, coffee can leave significant stains on your teeth. Lightening up your coffee with cream or milk helps a little.
2. Citrus Fruits
Lemons, orange juice, and tangerines are full of vitamin C, which is good for you. However, they’re also highly acidic and can damage your tooth enamel. One study tried soaking pulled teeth in different juices, and found grapefruit and lemon juice did the most damage. If you want to make sure you’re getting enough vitamin C, store-bought orange juice is a less acidic, more tooth-healthy option.
3. Sports Drinks
They sound healthy, but sugar is a top ingredient for many sports and energy drinks. The American Academy of Pediatrics says sports drinks can be helpful for young athletes engaged in prolonged, vigorous physical activities, but unnecessary in most cases. Before your next sip, check the label to make sure your drink of choice is low in sugar or drink water.
4. Diet Soda
When you eat sugary foods or sip sugary drinks for long periods of time, plaque bacteria use that sugar to produce acids that attack your enamel, the hard surface of your tooth. Most carbonated soft drinks, including diet soda, are acidic and therefore, bad for your teeth. Caffeinated beverages, such as colas can also dry out your mouth. If you do consume soft drinks, try to drink alongside a cup of water.
5. Barbecue Sauce
Considering that summer has finally arrived and grills everywhere are heating up, it seems almost unfair to add barbecue sauce to our list of sneakily dangerous foods. Unfortunately, most people don’t realize that the thick, sweetly tangy sauce marinating our pork and chicken also marinates our teeth in sugar (sadly, most BBQ sauce is full of it), which can potentially send you down the path of tooth discoloration and decay.
Keeping Your Teeth Healthy
1. Understand your own oral health needs
Talk with your dentist, other oral health care specialist, or hygienist about any special conditions in your mouth and any ways in which your medical/health conditions affect your teeth or oral health. For Example, cancer treatments, pregnancy, heart diseases, diabetes, dental appliances (dentures, braces) can all impact your oral health and may necessitate a change in the care of your mouth and/or teeth. Be sure to tell your dentist if you have experienced a change in your general health or in any medications you are taking since your last dental visit.
2. Use fluoride.
Children and adults benefit from fluoride use. Fluoride strengthens developing teeth in children and prevents tooth decay in both children and adults. Toothpastes and mouth rinses contain fluoride. Fluoride levels in tap water may not be high enough without supplementation to prevent tooth decay. Contact your water utility to determine the level for your area. Talk with your dentist about your fluoride needs. Ask if fluoride supplements or a higher strength, prescription fluoride product is necessary for you.
3. Brush, floss, and rinse daily.
Brush your teeth at least twice a day (morning and before bed time) and floss at least once a day. Better still, brush after every meal and snack. These activities remove plaque, which if not removed, combines with sugars to form acids that lead to tooth decay. Bacterial plaque also causes gum disease and other periodontal diseases. Antibacterial mouth rinses also reduce bacteria that cause plaque and gum disease, and fluoride mouth rinse can help prevent tooth decay.
Become familiar with the appearance of your own mouth and teeth through frequent examination. This way, you will be able to catch any changes at an early stage and have these changes examined by a dentist. Look for the development of any spots, lesions, cuts, swellings, or growths on your gums, tongue, cheeks, inside of your lips, and floor and roof of your mouth. Examine your teeth for any signs of chipping or cracking, discoloration, and looseness. If you experience a change in your bite or develop pain, call your dentist as soon as possible. An oral exam is particularly important to conduct if you are a tobacco user, since you are at an increased risk of developing oral cancer.
5. Visit your dentist regularly.
The standard recommendation is to visit your dentist twice a year for check-ups and cleanings. Talk with your dentist about the frequency that is best for you.
Schedule An Appointment With Lomita Torrance Dental Office, Torrance, CA
We value your trust in us as part of your family’s total healthcare team and look forward to getting to know each of you as the wonderfully unique individual that you are. Each one of us loves what we do and we believe at Lomita Torrance Dental Office that it shows in the quality of our work and our patient interactions and it is one of the reasons why Lomita Torrance Dental Office is the clear choice for the dental patients in the surrounding neighbourhood.
We hope that each of our patient has a happy and healthy smile makeover and that means protecting your teeth and your oral health. We care for your smile and to have a detailed understanding regarding your oral care, you can always schedule a consultation with our dental hygienist at 23520 Crenshaw Boulevard Torrance, CA 90505 or by calling us at (424) 201-2885.