Is your sweet tooth sabotaging your smile? We all know that eating high-sugared foods and drinks can cause cavities. However, it is probably unrealistic to assume that patients will eliminate sugar entirely out of their diet. There are times when you cave in to your sweet tooth cravings. When this happens, there are a few things you can do to protect your teeth and or at least lower your risk for decay.
Chase it down with water. Assuming you don’t have a toothbrush handy, a nice rinse with plain water can help rinse away the sugar and bacteria before it starts forming harmful acids on your teeth. This may not help the affects of that dessert on your hips, but it can certainly benefit your pearly whites.
Grab a stick of gum. This works very similar to rinsing with water after a sugary treat. Chewing sugarless gum can rid your mouth of harmful particles within the grooves of your teeth and it can also help neutralize the acids in your mouth by increasing saliva flow. Your saliva is a very important component of cavity prevention.
Avoid snacking. When it comes to sugary foods and your teeth, it is better to eat them with a meal than as a stand-alone snack. This lessens the chance for that sugar to cling inside your mouth and on your teeth – especially if you typically brush after meals.
Stay away from sticky. Let’s face it; there are countless dessert options to choose from that are not sticky in texture. Sticky sweets are the absolute worst for your teeth, for obvious reasons. A bowl of ice cream or even a piece of dark chocolate is much better for your smile health than chewy candy.
At Grateful Dental, we understand that you can’t always avoid a sweet tooth temptation. However, we hope you will choose wisely when the craving hits. Pay attention to the timing of your indulgence, what you do afterwards as well as the type of treat you pick. You may be able to satisfy your sweet tooth with a healthy and naturally-sweet alternative, such as a piece of fruit or yogurt.