Do you relish sugary treats? You are not alone! It is no doubt that sugar is one of the most addictive substances you can ever take. The rush of happy emotions can be unrivaled whenever you sink your teeth into sugary treats. But did you know that sugar might damage your teeth?
It is true that foods containing sugars damage your teeth. You must have heard your parents warn you countless times about overeating candy, cakes, etc., because the sugar will damage your teeth. But is it really sugar that is bad for your teeth? Let’s find out.
The Ecosystem In Your Mouth
Your mouth is a full ecosystem that houses millions of bacteria, both beneficial and harmful. Every second there is a tug-of-war in your mouth because each colony is fighting for survival. The problem is that your teeth might bear the brunt of this battle.
Luckily, your teeth are designed to withstand so much because they are made of 96% mineral. However, this doesn’t suggest that they are indestructible. Your teeth will need preventive dental care to ensure they last an entire lifetime.
So, How Does Sugar Affect Your Teeth?
Within an ecosystem, a tug-of-war ensures that all living organisms survive. It is no different when it comes to your mouth. Whenever you take foods containing sugar, the harmful bacteria swarm in those areas where food debris is lodged. Sugar is a magnet for harmful bacteria.
Almost immediately, plaque begins to form. Plaque is colorless and coats the teeth whenever you eat food. It is made up of saliva, food debris, and bacteria. If you fail to remove the plaque by brushing and flossing your teeth, the harmful bacteria will wreak havoc on your teeth.
As the bacteria swarm to eat, they produce acids to digest the food debris. As they do this, they decrease the mouth’s pH to become more acidic. Such an environment is not favorable for your teeth.
The acids will erode the enamel to remove the minerals that keep the teeth strong. As time goes by, the enamel becomes weak and more susceptible to attack. Shortly after, cavities will begin to form.
So, sugar doesn’t directly destroy your teeth, but they provide food for bacteria to consume. But when your diet has less sugar, beneficial bacteria thrive, thus starving the harmful bacteria.
How Can You Save Your Teeth?
Much of the solution will come from your end because you are entirely responsible for what you eat. In any case, your teeth are designed to remineralize (regain the lost minerals). Remineralization is a natural process that strengthens the teeth.
Your saliva is also vital in remineralization since it contains calcium, phosphates, and other minerals.
However, you will need to try out the following to ensure that your teeth remain healthy:
- Reduce Your Sugar Intake
As you already know, sugar is linked to many other health issues. So, reducing your intake will benefit not only your teeth but also your overall health. Also, if you are taking a sugary drink, use a straw since it limits your exposure to sugar.
- Maintain Proper Oral Hygiene
You already know brushing your teeth is essential for longevity and health. So, you will need to clean them daily without fail, ensuring that each surface is covered. Employ the proper flossing and brushing techniques so that the hard-to-reach areas are cleaned. This is the only way that you can remove plaque from your teeth.
- Watch What You Eat
Nowadays, sugar is in almost anything we eat. So, be cautious about what you are eating since manufacturers are out to make a profit, and they will use pseudonyms to trick you that the food is sugar-free.
Your best bet is to go for fresh fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and dairy products. Besides the obvious nutrients that fruits and vegetables offer, they are also effective in increasing the saliva flow in your mouth to aid in remineralization.
- Visit Your Dentist
Caring for your teeth at home is essential, but your teeth will still need extra care from our dentist in Dublin. Our dentist will examine your teeth, clean them, and alert you if anything needs attention. Taking care of your pearly whites is a joint effort between you and your dentist.