Proper nutrition can benefit you in a number of ways; increased energy, improved immunity, glowing skin, mental clarity, and a lower risk of heart disease and stroke. How often, however, do you think about how your diet affects your oral health?
Your diet can affect your risk of cavities, enamel health, and gum condition. Healthy foods provide an environment that can prevent inflammation and infection. Vegetables, fruits, legumes, and nuts are the ideal choices for oral health. Calcium-fortified beverages, milk, and other dairy products provide vitamins, minerals, and calcium that assist in keeping teeth, bones, and gums healthy. Eating crispy fruits and vegetables, such as apples and celery, will help clean your teeth and gums.
A healthy diet contains all the important vitamins and minerals, and the most important mineral for teeth is fluoride – especially for children. Between the ages of 6 months and 16 years old, both the primary and the permanent teeth come in, therefore adequate fluoride is critical.
Don’t forget, however, that too much fluoride is harmful. Dentist Trey Carico can advise you on the accurate dosage of fluoride for your child, taking into account whether your municipal water is fluoridated.
Even though adults’ teeth have already formed, fluoride helps with remineralizing weakened enamel to a degree. This dynamic mineral is applied to teeth during comprehensive dental cleanings at Chattanooga Center for Comprehensive Dentistry and daily with fluoride toothpaste.
Bacteria that cause enamel-destroying plaque love a steady diet of sugar—from soda, candy, and even fruit juices. When enamel wears away, the teeth become vulnerable to discoloration, damage, and cavities.
Sugary foods that are especially harmful are those that get trapped in the spaces between teeth and the tiny pits and cracks in the molars. Candies that are chewy or hard can lodge in these spaces and allow for the adverse sugar to have direct contact with enamel until brushing occurs. Sticky candy can also damage braces and retainers. More than one retainer has fallen prey to sticky caramel or hard taffy.
Be sure to brush after each meal and before bed. Furthermore, remember to floss or use a water-pik method to dislodge food particles trapped in spaces. By eating well, brushing properly, flossing regularly, and avoiding foods that stick to your teeth, you can have a beautiful smile for life. (And, hopefully, the physical stamina to complement that nice smile and the energy to enjoy both.)
I’m Dentist Trey Carico, and I have a full-service dental practice in Chattanooga. Helping my dental patients stay healthy is important to me, and so is helping them achieve the smile they want through cosmetic dentistry services such as veneers, teeth whitening, and cosmetic dental smile makeovers.
Chattanooga Center for Comprehensive Dentistry in Chattanooga has been serving the Red Bank area since 1975. Please contact us at 423-756-1540 if you are looking for exceptional dental care from a local Chattanooga dentist with the experience, expertise, and personalized attention you deserve.
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