The best and worst treats for your teeth
Posted: October 31, 2012
Everyday we intake food and drinks that stain our teeth. Some of us have become so addicted to certain treats that our teeth have been dyed an unsightly shade of yellow. Tooth enamel is one of the hardest substances in your body, but harsh food and drinks like soda, coffee and popcorn are much stronger. We all want bright, white teeth, and there are many products on the market that claim to produce sparkling results; however, some products can leave your teeth in even more troubling than before. Teeth whitening products found in stores strip the teeth of enamel, making them extra sensitive to extreme temperatures and prone to chipping. Below are some of the top villains and heroes of teeth. Soft Drinks Many people love fizzy drinks, but these are some of the worst beverages for your teeth. Not only do they contain a large amount of sugar that spoils those pearly whites, the high acid content does major damage. Corrosive acids like malic, citric, phosphoric and tartaric are in these types of beverages, and their favorite meal is your teeth. Surprisingly, clear, citrus-flavored drinks are worse than colas. Energy drinks fall under this category, too. Gummy Vitamins What?! You may be taking these vitamins thinking “These are good for me, and delicious, double whammy!” Unfortunately, they can contain a concentrated acid that sticks on your teeth and causes damage. If you are taking these, make sure to rinse your mouth with water afterwards to clear the mouth of any leftover gummies. Sports Drinks This is another villain that often claims to be good for you, but don’t be fooled. Some of these drinks contain a high concentration of acid and sugar that tears apart the teeth. If you tend to rehydrate yourself with sports drinks, try to make the switch to water or coconut water that contains very high levels of potassium to hydrate you much better than these acidic counterparts. Starchy foods Things like white bread, pasta and potato chips are major culprits of an unhealthy mouth. Even though they may not seem sugary, these carbo-loaded treats turn are just sugar in disguise. The starch almost immediately turns into sugar and eats away at the teeth. Nuts Many nuts contain high levels of calcium for healthy teeth and gums, while providing your body with tons of vitamins and minerals. Chomping on peanuts, almonds, cashews or walnuts will make for extra healthy teeth. Dairy products It’s no surprise that calcium-filled products like milk, yogurt and cheese can keep teeth nice and strong. These products help replace minerals into teeth, and enriched milk has vitamin D which helps the body utilize all the calcium goodness of these snacks. Tea Sipping on green or black tea is healthy for you in many ways. These wonder drinks contain polyphenols that interact with plaque causing bacteria, preventing them from growing or producing acid which is very harmful to teeth and gums. H20 What isn’t water good for? When it comes to oral health, water is a valuable tool. It is the primary component of saliva, acts as a rinsing agent for food and sugary drinks and can strengthen the enamel of teeth if it is fluoridated. Slurp up as much water throughout the day as you can, and make sure to drink a glass after eating or drinking anything bad for the teeth. Consuming products high in fiber, like broccoli, helps the enamel stay strong, or drinking a glass of milk before or during a meal will help re-harden the teeth. This will help the teeth from turning yellow. Professional teeth whitening products are the best for getting extra pearly whites. For those with extra sensitive teeth, sensitive treatment plans are great solutions.