The Impact of Food and Drink on Dental Health

The dentists at Great Lakes Dental Care continuously stress the importance of cavity protection towards your overall health. However, preventing cavities involves more than brushing your teeth — proper oral hygiene also requires a balanced diet. While it is common knowledge that soda and candy cause tooth decay, even healthy foods such as tomatoes and apples can cause problems. The minute any food enters your mouth, your teeth experience exposure to acids that wear down enamel. The more you eat, the more your teeth become exposed to cavities.

Eating a balanced diet and brushing your teeth regularly helps you to maintain good oral health. Visit our Grand Rapids dentist regularly to check up on your teeth and ask for advice.

Eat the Right Foods

As it turns out, certain foods can actually help your oral hygiene. Foods high in calcium and phosphorus, such as cheese, meat, nuts and milk can rebuild the damaged enamel of your teeth. Vegetables and firm fruits, like apples and pears, are also recommended as their high water content weakens the damaging effects of sugar.

Unfortunately, much of the food we eat hurts more than it helps. Breads, bananas, citrusy fruits, tomatoes, baked goods, chips and candy all coat your teeth with sugar. The bacteria in your mouth take that sugar and turn it into acid, which then attacks your enamel. As a rule of thumb, avoid sugar as much as possible.

This doesn’t mean that you must completely avoid the foods you love. It does mean, however, that you need to eat your foods in moderation. Try mixing acidic fruits like oranges into a salad with spinach and nuts. The more food groups you include in each meal, the healthier your mouth will be for it.

Set an Appointment with Your Dentist

Brushing your teeth is just as important as eating the right foods. Dentists recommend that you brush your teeth after each meal, or at least twice a day, and floss at least once a day. In addition to that, visit your Grand Rapids dentists at least twice a year to significantly reduce your chances of tooth decay.

If you have further questions about the effects of food and drink on your oral health, or if you would like to make an appointment, please contact our office or call us directly at 616.784.6300.