It may sometimes appear that dentists want us all to eat a ‘perfect diet’; one that is free from sugar.
We only do this though because we are aware of the damage that some food and drinks can cause, and know that it is in the best interests of our Cheshunt patients to be aware of them.
Although we know that sugar and acidic foods can cause damage to our teeth, we also know that most people are likely to continue to consume them, including dentists! However, our aim is to raise awareness and hopefully help people to take steps to reduce their intake of these types of foods and drinks. A significant change in diet, backed with good oral health care, could make a big difference to the condition of your teeth.
Inevitably, the number one enemy of our teeth, other than neglect, is sugar. Whilst this has long been the case, the fact is that sugar is now more widely present in foods of all types. Whereas once, if we avoided sweets and other obviously sugary items, we would be OK, these days, almost all food has sugar in it, often for preservation as well as taste purposes. As we now tend to eat more convenience foods, we also consume far more sugar than we used to.
To cut down on the amount of sugar in these foods, as well as reducing obvious ones such as chocolates etc, keep an eye on the labels of the products, or, better still, cook your own meals from scratch. These don’t have to be complicated ones and even simple-to-cook meals can taste great with good ingredients.
Acidic food and drink
Close behind sugar comes acidic foods. These can wear away the enamel of the teeth, making them more vulnerable to tooth sensitivity and enamel erosion. Although we offer dental veneers at The Lodge Dental Suite for patients who are already affected; for those whose enamel has not yet been compromised, prevention is a much better option.
One of the biggest culprits are soft drinks. Many of these are very high in citric acids and have been linked with the increase in tooth decay in children especially. Even natural fruit drinks with no added sugar can be damaging too. Water is always the best way to stay hydrated and should be the ‘go to’ drink, with other soft drinks reserved for special occasions only. Whole fruits such as oranges’ lemons and limes are also very acidic. You should limit the quantity of these that you eat too.
Avoiding sugars and acidic foods altogether is probably not realistic, but even reducing them will help to keep your teeth free from problems. Another key factor is making sure that you look after your teeth well with regular cleaning and flossing; and make sure to see a dentist at The Lodge Dental Suite on a regular basis too! Appointments can be made at our Cheshunt dental clinic by calling us on 01992 643388.