When it comes to maintaining good dental health, brushing and flossing are essential. But did you know that what you eat and drink can also have a big impact on the health of your teeth? Here are six surprising foods and drinks that can damage your teeth:
- Ice: Chewing on hard ice cubes can cause tiny cracks in your teeth and even lead to chips or fractures. Stick to drinking cold beverages without ice to avoid damaging your teeth.
- Alcohol: Alcohol can dry out your mouth and reduce saliva flow, which can make it easier for harmful bacteria to grow and cause tooth decay. Drinking alcohol in moderation and staying hydrated can help protect your teeth.
- Coffee and tea are popular beverages that many people enjoy on a daily basis. However, they contain high levels of tannins and acids, which can erode your tooth enamel and cause staining. In addition, adding sugar or cream to your coffee or tea can increase the risk of tooth decay. To protect your teeth, try to limit your consumption of coffee and tea, and drink plenty of water after consuming them to rinse away any acids.
- Candies are a favorite treat for many people, but they are also a major source of tooth decay. Candies are high in sugar, which feeds the harmful bacteria in your mouth and leads to the formation of plaque. Additionally, sticky candies such as caramel and taffy can get stuck in your teeth, making it harder to clean them properly. To protect your teeth, try to limit your intake of candies, especially those that are sticky or contain high amounts of sugar.
- Sweet drinks such as soda, sports drinks, and fruit juice are also major culprits when it comes to damaging your teeth. These drinks are high in sugar and acids, which can erode your tooth enamel and cause cavities. To protect your teeth, try to limit your consumption of sweet drinks, and drink water instead. If you do drink sweet drinks, use a straw to reduce contact with your teeth and rinse your mouth with water afterwards.
- Citrus fruits such as lemons, limes, and oranges are high in acid, which can erode your tooth enamel and cause sensitivity. Additionally, the acid in citrus fruits can irritate mouth sores and increase the risk of cavities. To protect your teeth, try to limit your consumption of citrus fruits, and drink water afterwards to rinse away any acids.