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The Top Foods to Avoid in Your Diet for Great Dental Health


Posted on 9/23/2015 by Janie Bell
A woman on a diet eating a salad.When it comes to keeping your teeth, gums, and mouth healthy, most people know that they should avoid sugar, but good dental health goes a lot further than that. There are a variety of foods and drinks that you should eliminate or minimize from your diet in order to keep your teeth healthy, and by identifying some of the biggest troublemakers, you can retain your strong and beautiful smile.

Citrus Fruit
]While rich in vitamin C and other important nutrients needed for optimal health, citrus fruits and juices aren't great when it comes to your teeth. In particular, lemon juice and grapefruit are highly acidic, and over time, they can erode the enamel of the teeth.

If you do enjoy your citrus, moderation is the key. Oranges and orange juice tend to be the least acidic of the citrus fruits, so they are your safest bet. Many varieties bought in your local grocery store have also been fortified with vitamin D and calcium to boost tooth health, so go ahead and drink them without guilt, but be sure to brush and floss regularly.

Ice
Many people don't think of ice as anything that could damage their teeth. After all, it's just frozen water, right? Despite the fact that ice doesn't contain additives or sugar, it is bad news for your teeth, as chewing on it can damage your enamel, crack your teeth, or cause another dental emergency. If you have a habit of chewing on ice, work on trying to enjoy water within its liquid form.

Pickles
Pickles seem like a perfectly harmless food, but if you are trying to eat a dental health-friendly diet, they should be kept off of the list. Vinegar and other acids are used during the pickling process in order to provide the salty and sour taste. This also makes them potentially hazardous to tooth enamel. While snacking on a pickle every now and then won't be likely to make a major difference to your dental health, if you develop a major pickle habit you should consider the impact on our mouth.

Coffee
Most of us need a strong cup of coffee to get going in the morning, and in its natural form, coffee can be a very healthy beverage choice. Unfortunately, most people aren't able to resist adding in sugar, and caffeinated coffee can dry out your mouth. Additionally, drinking coffee frequently can stain your teeth, leaving your once-white smile dull and yellow. If you do drink coffee, may sure that you are brushing regularly and drinking plenty of water in between cups.

Chewy and Hard Candies
When it comes to candy, some are greater evils than others regarding your dental health. As a general rule, the stickier a candy is, the worse it will be on your teeth. Caramels or taffy tend to stick to the teeth for extended periods of time, and this allows the bacteria in the mouth the chance to feast on the sugar. This can produce acid, which will work at dissolving your tooth enamel and can cause cavities.

While hard candies like Jolly Ranchers may not cling to your teeth, they can be dangerous for your dental health in other ways. Hard candies dissolve slowly and will saturate your mouth for minutes at a time, allowing bacteria to produce acid. Hard candies also have the added risk of chipping or breaking the teeth when you bite into them, and these problems will require a trip to our office.

Diet and Regular Soda

While many people seem to know that regular soda can be damaging to the teeth, some believe that diet soda is a good substitute. Unfortunately, it is the acid found in soft drinks that harm the teeth, and even diet soda contains the phosphoric and citric acid that will erode the enamel if consumed in large quantities.

In addition to changes to your diet, regular checkups with our staff are also essential to maintaining great dental health. Please contact us today to schedule your appointment.
D. Ian Bell, D.D.S.
Advanced Aesthetic, Restorative & Family Dentistry
Bellevue-Redmond Professional Center

15613 Bel-Red Rd, Suite A
Bellevue, WA 98008-2348
(425) 502-5867
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