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Carbohydrates are an important part of a balanced, healthy diet, but they are also one of the main culprits in tooth erosion and decay. Since we can’t cut carbs out our diets completely we have to understand how the carbs cause cavities, so we can prevent them.
When you eat carbs, you are not just nourishing yourself; you are also nourishing the cavity forming bacteria in your mouth. The bacteria that cause cavities feed on the carbs in your mouth. During the feeding process the bacteria cause your mouth to become more acidic. This acid in your mouth starts eroding the tooth, beginning the first steps towards tooth decay.
Since you can’t avoid eating carbs altogether, what should you do to avoid cavities?
Eat the right carbs- Avoid eating sticky carbs that cling to your teeth. If the food is stuck to your teeth it provides a constant source of food to the bacteria, causing more erosion.
Don’t let food stick around- Rinse out your mouth and floss after eating. Don’t brush immediately after eating though, since that makes the acid action that’s taking place on your teeth worse.
Reduce the acidity of your mouth- You can do this by chewing gum after a meal, this stimulates the production of saliva, neutralizing the acid in the mouth. Also, try avoiding carbonated beverages and orange juice, since those drinks are extremely acidic.
Don’t add unneeded acid- Try avoiding extremely acidic foods like carbonated beverages and orange juice. If you o drink them, make sure to follow it up with a swirl of fluoridated water in order to rinse away the acid, lower mouth acidity, and promote the remineralization of the tooth.
Eat the carbs in one go- Have your carbs as part of a meal instead of snacking on them throughout the day. This limits your mouth to carbohydrate exposure only during meal times.
Reports indicate that 30 to 50 percent of U.S. teens consume energy drinks, and that 62 percent consume at least one sports drink a day. While the drinks hydrate and offer energy and minerals, there’s a side of them that most don’t talk about. Sports drinks are full of acid and sugar used to enhance […]
Many parents have the misconception that teething causes diarrhea. What’s the correlation, you may ask? It is believed that the excess saliva that comes with teething can affect the gastrointestinal system. However, although there is no evidence of a causal relationship, this idea may not be completely baseless, as teething babies put a variety of […]
Turns out you can have straighter teeth by mail! Well, at least that is what a few by-mail-only orthodontia companies believe. In an effort to help patients save money, some orthodontic companies are having patients send their impressions to them by mail instead of going in for a dentist’s consultation. While this approach may save […]
Did you know alligators can replace each of their teeth up to 50 times in their life? Humans are unique among vertebrates for being able to replace our teeth only once. But new insights into how alligators replace their teeth may help stimulate the same process in ours. Professor Cheng-Ming Chuong, M.D., Ph.D., has discovered […]
Recently hailed as an inexpensive and organic alternative to teeth whitening, fruit concoctions have arisen as the new way to get those pearly whites. But is there any truth to all these claims? A study at the University of Iowa points to “No”. Associate Professor So Ran Kwon tested homemade strawberry-baking soda mix, over the […]
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