Snacking and Dental Health

For the best dental health, we recommended that you limit eating and drinking between meals. Of course, sometimes eating between meals must happen. Unfortunately, most people choose foods like sweets and chips for snacks; foods that harm teeth by promoting tooth decay.

If you do snack, try making nutritious choices such as low-fat cheeses, yogurt, fresh fruit, vegetables or nuts. This is not just for your dental health as it will have a positive effect for your overall health as well. When you look and feel better, you smile more and we always want to see you smile!

Did you know that certain foods can put you at risk for cavities and other oral health problems?

  • Avoid candies, especially hard candies as they are full of sugar and can trigger a dental emergency such as a broken or chipped tooth. Better alternative? Chew sugarless gum that carries the ADA Seal.
  • Frequent exposures to acidic foods can erode enamel, making teeth more susceptible to decay over time. So even though a squeeze of lemon or lime can make a glass of water a bit tastier, it’s not always the best choice for your mouth.
  • Coffee and tea can be healthy beverage choices compared to sodas and juice drinks. Unfortunately too many people can’t resist adding sugar. Frequent drinks of coffee and tea may also stain your teeth. If you do consume, make sure to drink plenty of water and try to keep the sugary additions to a minimum.
  • Many people consider dried fruit a good alternative, but many dried fruits are sticky. Sticky foods can damage your teeth since they tend to stay on the teeth longer than other types of food. Dried fruits tend to also be coated in sugar. If you find yourself eating dried fruits or trail mix often, make sure to rinse with water after and to brush and floss carefully.
  • Potato chips are filled with starch, which tends to get trapped in your teeth. If you choose to indulge in snacks like these, take extra care when you floss that day to remove all the food particles that can lead to plaque build-up.
  • Many sports and energy drinks have sugar as a top ingredient. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, while sports drinks can be helpful for young athletes engaged in prolonged, vigorous physical activities, in most cases they are unnecessary. Choose water instead!

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