The enamel on our teeth helps us to avoid cavities and keep our smiles bright and white. Because of this, it is important to choose foods that are good for our teeth, and prevent the destruction of enamel.
What is Enamel?
Tooth enamel is one of the four major tissues that make up our teeth. It is the portion of the tooth that is visible, and the first line of defense for your teeth against harmful foods.
There is a high mineral content in enamel, making it the hardest tissue in the body. Unfortunately, this also makes it more vulnerable to demineralization, which is the production of cavities. Ingesting an excess of fermentable carbohydrates can speed up this process, causing irreversible damage. Choosing foods that have a positive impact on enamel can help your teeth remain healthy.
Water is one of the healthiest products for your body in every aspect. Those who do not drink a sufficient amount of water during the day can create fatal heath problems for themselves. Drinking enough water is the best way to maintain the balance of body fluids, including saliva in the mouth. It can also help control the calories we take in by making us feel more full. As a result, we will take in fewer foods that are harmful to our teeth.
The main ingredient of saliva is water. Your saliva is important not only to the health of your enamel, but to your gums as well. When we consume sugary drinks or products, there is often a film of destructive sugar that is left to reside on the surface of the teeth. This does more damage than we realize, creating a problem before we have a change to react. When you drink water it can rinse the surface of your teeth, saving the enamel from cavities. It will boost your saliva, keeping your teeth protected at all times.
Most dairy products that don’t have sugar added to them are beneficial to your teeth. Similar to water, cheese helps to stimulate saliva, protecting and clearing out plaque.
Cheeses, along with many other dairy products also have high amounts of calcium. Other dairy products like milk and yogurt also contain phosphates. Both of these are very beneficial for tooth enamel.
Many of us have heard that chewing gum can be detrimental to our oral health, but that is only partially true. Chewing sugar-free gum will freshen your breath, and help improve the heath of your enamel.
As with the other items on this list, gum stimulates saliva production. This just goes to show how important saliva is for the health of your mouth. Besides that, the action of chewing gum can pull leftover food out of your teeth, lessening the damage that can be caused by food particles stuck between your teeth.
Many sugar-free gums are made with xylitol, which is a sugar substitute that comes from certain types of plants. This ingredient can battle tooth decay by fighting against bacteria that causes cavities.
Nuts are healthy for your teeth, as long as you floss after you have finished eating them to prevent the residue from lingering longer than necessary. Some of the best benefits for your teeth they bring are vitamins and minerals, such as:[arrowlist]
- Vitamin D
- Folic acid
- Vitamin B6
All these bring great benefits to your enamel, strengthening it further.
Most of the time, we tend to focus on the foods that are bad for our teeth, and try to avoid them. It is equally important to recognize which foods and drinks are necessary for healthy enamel and try to eat and drink some of them every day. By learning what our teeth need, cavities and tooth decay can be prevented.
[box_light]Cassie Costner writes for Stevenson Pediatric Dentistry on the best foods for your teeth. She has researched the ways sugar can influence tooth enamel and gums and she is always on the lookout for foods that can positively impact oral health.[/box_light]
- Think before you drink: Erosion of tooth enamel from soda pop is permanent (medicalnewstoday.com)
- No More Tooth Decay: 6 Surprising Foods And Drinks That Help Prevent Cavities (medicaldaily.com)
- Brush up on dental hygiene (TBO.com)
- Great Dental Care Advice That Will Brighten That Smile (adelaideartbeat.com)
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