Everybody loves sugar! In fact, people like it so much that the reports of USDA show that the average American consumes more than 160 pounds each year. You may think that you don’t eat that much, but if you start calculating the daily sugar intake, you will have a big surprise. Sugar is not that healthy for your general and oral health. In this article, you will learn about the dangers of sugar and how it can affect your smile.
How does sugar affect your oral health?
Sugar is considered to be the main culprit for cavities. Tooth decay forms as a result of the interaction with the acids produced by bacteria living in your mouth. When you consume something sweet, the bacteria will increase the acidity in your mouth. The acid attack can wear away the layer protecting your teeth (called the enamel), leaving them weak and vulnerable. With constant consumption of sweet foods, the sugar will eat away the enamel leaving you with a mouth full of cavities.
What to do to protect your smile?
Avoiding sugars is almost impossible today. You can try to avoid desserts, sodas, and other sweet foods. But this is not enough. It is hard to abstain permanently from not consuming sugary foods and beverages, and if you cave into sweet cravings, the only thing you can do is to rinse your mouth with water immediately after and brush your teeth 30 minutes later. By removing the food particles from your mouth, you can maintain the health of your teeth longer.
As a general advice, if you want to maintain a good oral health, you should brush your teeth at least twice every day, floss and rinse with mouthwash. This way, you will prevent having to deal with cavities and conditions such as gingivitis and gum disease. Even if you don’t eat that much sugar, you should still perform a good oral care routine. By doing so, you will remove the stuck food particles and the excess bacteria from your mouth.
Read the labels
By reading the labels of the food and beverages you purchase, you can see the quantity of sugar they contain. You will be surprised to see that almost all products contain sugars today. Reading the labels, you can reduce the consumption of sugar considerably.
Another type of products that contain a lot of sugars are the sauces, salad dressings, and the condiments. You can switch these sugar dressings with traditional ones, like oil and vinegar. Transform your meals into something more basic, with fresh ingredients.
The most dangerous sweet foods are the ones that are sticky. For example, chocolates, chips, caramel, peanut butter and many others contain sugars, and they will get stuck in your teeth. This will make the sugar attack much more efficient because of the permanent contact with the teeth.
You can ask your dentist during your next check-up for more tips on how to avoid sugars and fight tooth decay.