The foods and drinks people consume affect their oral health in a variety of ways. While some foods and beverages can contribute to better oral health, some of them can affect our oral health badly. Here is a list of foods and beverages that are bad for our oral health:
Foods that are high in sugar content are also very bad for oral health. This is because bacteria in the mouth feed on sugar. Over time, the bacteria use sugar to produce acids that destroy tooth enamel. This can cause tooth decay and cavities.
Citrus fruits may be delicious, but they’re also very acidic and can erode tooth enamel if eaten frequently. These include oranges, lemons, limes, and grapefruits.
Acidic foods and beverages can harm your teeth. Acid wears down tooth enamel, exposing the dentin layer underneath. The dentin layer underneath is thinner and more susceptible to decay than the enamel layer.
Sticky foods aren’t just bad for your waistline; they’re bad for your teeth too. Sticky foods cling to your teeth, causing plaque buildup and increasing your risk for tooth decay. Sticky foods also increase your risk of gum disease. Foods like dried fruit, gummy candies, caramel, honey, granola bars, and dried fruits can cause major damage to your teeth.
Coffee and tea are two of the most common beverages drunk by Americans. Although greatly enjoyed by many, both beverages can be harmful to your oral health. The caffeine found in coffee and tea causes dry mouth. A dry mouth can cause bad breath and tooth decay. If you do drink coffee or tea, be sure to drink plenty of water to counter the dehydrating effects of the caffeine.
Hard candy and breath mints are some of the worst foods for your oral health. These snacks are sticky and linger on your teeth. The sugar found in hard candy and breath mints is broken down by the bacteria in your mouth. This produces acid that can weaken your tooth enamel.
Tobacco products, such as cigarettes, cigars, and chewing tobacco, can wreak havoc on your oral health. They increase your risk of dental decay, gum disease, and oral cancer. If you use tobacco products, ask your dentist for tips on how to quit.
Beer and wine both contain a lot of sugar. Alcohol also irritates the tissues in the mouth, which can increase your risk for gum disease. While red wine contains antioxidants and is good for the heart, acidity can damage the teeth. Alcohol also causes dehydration, which causes dry mouth, which leads to increased infection.
Sports drinks and energy drinks are some of the worst foods for oral health. These sugary beverages can damage tooth enamel and increase your risk of tooth decay. Sports and energy drinks also contain high amounts of citric acid that can wear down tooth enamel. The carbohydrates in the drinks can also feed oral bacteria that can then cause plaque to form.
Please do reach out to us on call or by scheduling an online consultation with our dental professionals, and we’ll be glad to assist you further.