How Can Diet Contribute To Tooth Decay?

Monrovia DentistWe’ve all heard about the harmful effects that candy and sugary treats may have on oral health and the fact that these types of foods contribute to tooth decay and cavities.  At Dr. Q Dental, we also make our Monrovia-area patients aware that optimal oral health is a gateway to improving the overall health of your entire body, and diet has a lot to do with this.

What Kinds of Foods Should I Avoid to Prevent Tooth Decay?

In addition to sugary treats and candy, particularly hard candy that sticks stubbornly to crevices within your teeth, most dentists recommend that you also avoid junk food, such as fast-food burgers, tacos, fries, and chips, as these foods erode tooth enamel over time due to their high concentration of acid that damages tooth enamel and encourages the growth of harmful bacteria that can cause tooth decay and cavities.

Soft drinks that contain sugar, as well as carbonation and colorants, can also contribute to tooth decay due to a high concentration of acid, while also causing your teeth to become dull and grey by wearing down dental enamel and encouraging discoloration and staining of teeth.

Coffee, tea, and wine also contain high concentrations of acid and therefore cause an imbalance in your oral pH that encourages the growth of harmful bacteria, leading to dental decay and cavities.

Foods made from refined white flour – such as bread, crackers, cookies, cakes, and pastries – also produce the same harmful effect because white flour turns to sugar in the body and produces the same acid imbalance that can cause harmful bacteria to flourish.

What Foods Promote Dental Health?

Dentists such as Dr. Q in Monrovia encourage their patients to consume lots of fresh fruits and vegetables, lean meats and proteins, natural whole grains, and foods free of colorants and chemical additives to achieve optimal dental and overall health.  Choose natural juices over bottled soft drinks, natural fruit over candy and sweets, and non-processed home-cooked foods over fast food and packaged snacks. We also encourage our patients to drink plenty of water to maintain a fresh and healthy mouth.

How Can I Counteract The Harmful Effects of Junk Food on My Teeth?

Regular visits to your dentist for routine checkups and cleanings are the best way to maintain a healthy mouth and bright smile free of cavities and tooth decay. There are also a number of healthy habits you can apply at home to encourage a healthier, cleaner mouth that will be more likely to discourage the growth of harmful bacteria and tooth decay.  At our Monrovia-area office, Dr. Q advises her patients to brush diligently after every meal, and rinse their mouth thoroughly after consuming snacks.  We recommend daily flossing and also encourage the use of dental irrigators to maintain a hydrated and fresh mouth with a healthy pH to ward off the growth of harmful bacteria.

If you live in the Monrovia area or neighboring communities in California and are looking for a dentist that provides comprehensive dental care with a gentle touch, contact our office today at (626) 599-9819 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Q.