Most people know that sugar is one of the foods that pose the most danger to your teeth but far fewer are able to explain why. Here we outline how sugar effects your teeth and what you can do to prevent any resulting damage.
Who does it affect?
Everyone – no matter how healthy your teeth are, sugar consumption poses a risk to all.
What does it do?
Particles from any food which are left in the mouth after eating increase the risk of tooth erosion. Bacteria and saliva combine with the food particles to form plaque. This plaque contains bacteria which release acid which will begin to dissolve your tooth enamel and create cavities. As sugar is a particularly high-energy food, when it combines with the bacteria, the acid levels released are greater than those of other food types. As a result, foods with a high sugar content pose a higher risk of damage to your teeth than others.
Where is sugar found?
In more places than you expect! Naturally occurring sugars are found in foods that we consider otherwise good for us, like citrus fruits. When reading the ingredient labels of many processed foods, you may find sugar in your ketchup, your pasta dish, your yoghurt… It’s everywhere and while you can take steps to try and avoid it, eliminating sugar entirely from your diet is impractical.
How can you prevent damage?
The trick is to always keep up a thorough oral hygiene routine. Brush your teeth well at least twice a day and use a fluoride toothpaste. Floss or use interdental brushes, use mouthwash and ensure that you attend an appointment with your dentist at least twice a year. Though this should all be part of your regular routine anyway, it’s particularly important to do this when you have consumed food or drink with a high sugar content. Contact your dentist if you have any concerns so that they can be investigated and treated.
If you would like any more information, us a call today on 01603 621613 to book an appointment.