Regardless of your age, the causes of tooth decay are usually the same. Tooth decay happens when plaque (the sticky deposit on teeth) allows bacteria that feed on the sugars you eat to proliferate, leading to cavities over time. Cavities are a result of the bacteria metabolizing the sugar and converting it into acid that dissolves the tooth structure.
As such, it is pretty straightforward that consuming particularly sugary foods contribute to plaque formation and eventually, tooth decay. In this read, we are going to look at some of the most common foods to avoid, or at least limit in order to keep your teeth healthy.
The Most Unhealthy Foods for Your Teeth
Many people know that a proper diet and exercise routine are essential in keeping the body healthy. However, very few know the importance of a healthy mouth to the overall health of their bodies. Research has it that poor oral health can affect your life by affecting your physical, mental as well as social well-being. Oral pain, infections, and missing teeth can influence the manner in which you eat, speak and socialize.
Some foods are known to contribute to dental problems, which have an impact on your health on well-being. That said, here are some of the most unhealthy foods for your teeth:
Candies and Sugary Sweets
If you want to eat sweets, get those that quickly dissolve in the mouth. The type that lingers in your mouth, like lollipops, jelly beans, hard candies, and caramels make it difficult for the saliva to wash away the sugar, leading to plaque formation. Examples of sugary treats that contribute to tooth decay include cookies, pies, cakes, and other desserts.
If you want to have sweets, ensure you eat them after the main meal, instead of between meals. Also, do not forget to brush your teeth right after consuming anything sweet.
Whether sugar-free or not, soft drinks contain acid that can contribute to teeth deterioration and increased cavities. As such, you will want to stay away from soft drinks and go for water or unsweetened tea instead. If you must take a soft drink, avoid brushing your teeth immediately after. That’s because the acid softens the enamel and brushing will only increase the chances of tooth deterioration. Wait for at least 30 minutes and do not forget to rinse your mouth with water.
Vinegar is a vital ingredient in the pickling process. However, it contains an acid that not only leads to staining but enamel deterioration. Also, most pickled foods contain sugar, which as mentioned earlier, is the major contributor to tooth decay.
Both red and white wine contain erosive acid, which causes enamel abrasion. Red wine contains tannins, a compound that both stains the teeth and makes the mouth dry. So, if you intend to drink wine, ensure you brush your teeth beforehand. This helps minimize the amount of plaque the drink can attach to. Again, it is advisable to wait for half an hour before brushing your teeth after wine consumption to avoid abrasion from the acid found in the drink.
Crackers are basically refined carbohydrates. Extensive research has revealed a connection between the consumption of highly refined carbohydrates and body inflammation. This leads to chronic conditions like gingivitis and periodontitis.
You’ll also want to avoid sweet and viscous drinks such as high-carb sports beverages. That’s because they are not just acidic, but the thick liquid tends to stick to the teeth for an extended period. As such, consider drinking water after a workout session.
With these tips, you should be aware of foods to avoid to keep your teeth healthy.