The Health Advocate

by Hannah Whittenly, The Health Advocate

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Do you have an important event coming up? Are you working on a New Year’s resolution to take better care of your teeth? Some foods are worse for your smile than others. We give you the top four things to avoid when you want to beam proudly in this article.

Sweets and Sugary Foods

One way to get yourself to eat fewer sweets and protect your teeth is to eat vegetables more often. You can plan snacks to take on the go like baggies with carrot sticks, cucumber slices, and cherry tomatoes. These foods are popular items to carry along for a long afternoon away from home. The Cleveland Clinic says celery is excellent for getting between the teeth and gums, and it increases saliva production.

Citrus Foods

You can ask any dentist that does general dentistry, and they will tell you the acids in citrus fruits wear down the enamel on teeth rapidly. Avoiding these foods can protect your teeth and smile. When the enamel on your teeth wears down, grooves and chips can hold on to stains. The American Dental Association says your teeth are more prone to cavities if you experience enamel erosion from eating oranges, lemons, and limes.

Sticky Food Items

The ADA tells readers to stay away from dried fruits, gummy bears, taffy, bubble gum, trail mix, and marshmallows. Crunchy foods like chips, popcorn, and nuts break down into small pieces that get stuck between your teeth and cause decay. If you plan to eat these foods, then it is best to pack a travel toothbrush and floss when you leave home. You can bring these items along with some water in a backpack or put them in your briefcase or purse to keep at the ready when you want a sticky snack.

Use Sports Drinks, Tea, Coffee, and Soda in Moderation

A good rule of thumb is for every cup of coffee or a can of soda you drink, you should drink one to two glasses of water. The water will replenish fluids you lose drinking caffeine which is a natural diuretic. It also rinses your mouth and gets the sugar from these beverages off from your gums and teeth.

Protecting your teeth means ingesting fewer of the foods and beverages that cause staining and enamel erosion. You can further protect your teeth by always keeping your dental cleaning appointments and regular brushing and flossing. Carrying travel items with you is helpful when you eat lunch or spend the day away from the house.

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