The Sweet Truth About Sugar and Cavities
When it comes to sugar, our teeth are not treat-or-treaters. In fact, too much sugar can lead to plaque and cavities, which is something we’d all like to avoid.
With Halloween knocking at our doors, followed quickly by holidays notorious for candy, cookies and other tempting treats, we know it will be hard to resist! Treating yourself to sweets occasionally is fine, but just remember to pay attention to your teeth afterwards. Here are a few ideas from San Mateo Center for Cosmetic Dentistry to help you through the holidays.
The Sugar Connection
Cavities are caused by the plaque that builds up on your teeth; but what many people don’t realize is that sugar is one of the main culprits when it comes to plaque build-up. When you eat or drink something sugary, the sugar sticks to your teeth. The high acid content of the sugar breaks down the tooth enamel, which is the hard outer layer of your teeth. Once the enamel is broken down, bacteria can enter the tooth and cause cavities.
Refined sugar is the worst kind for your teeth because it is quickly broken down ty the bacteria in your mouth. Refined sugar is found in candy, cookies, cake, and other processed foods, but they’re also often added to sodas and energy drinks. Natural sugars, like those found in fruits and honey, aren’t as bad for your teeth or your health.
Tips for Taming Sugar
By now, it should be pretty clear that sugar is bad for your teeth. But what can you do to protect your teeth from the harmful effects of sugar? Here are a few ideas:
- Brush your teeth at least twice a day to protect your teeth from cavities. Be sure to use a toothbrush with soft bristles and fluoride toothpaste.
- Floss daily to remove plaque and bacteria from between your teeth, which can help prevent cavities and gum disease.
- Eat a balanced diet to protect your overall health, with plenty of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Limit sugary snacks and drinks as much as possible.
- Keep up with your regular dental checkups and cleanings. Your dentist can spot early signs of tooth decay and take steps to treat it before it becomes a bigger concern.
Following these tips can help you avoid cavities and keep your teeth healthy and strong. And to help achieve that beautiful smile that reflects good dental health, consider cosmetic dentistry in San Mateo.
We offer a wide range of services, like teeth whitening and porcelain veneers, for a sparkling, white smile!