The connection between the food we eat and the health of our teeth and gums is very strong. Poor nutrition, particularly a diet lacking essential nutrients, can lead to gum inflammation, tooth decay, and other oral issues. Conversely, eating a healthy diet that emphasizes fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins can help promote oral health. Here are the worst foods to oral health:

  • Sugary and starchy snacks

Our teeth are made for chewing food, not for snacking on sweets and potato chips throughout the day. These types of snacks are not only unhealthy, but they also break down into harmful acids in the mouth. When these acids are allowed to sit on the teeth, they can wear away enamel and cause cavities.

  • Diet soda

Drinking diet soda every day is bad for your oral health. Although diet soda does not contain sugar, it does contain acids. These acids wear down the outermost layer of your teeth, which eventually causes enamel erosion. Diet soda also has artificial coloring, which stains your teeth. Diet soda also contains phosphorus, which facilitates the growth of tooth-decay-causing bacteria.

  • Dried fruit

Candied fruit, such as gummy bears and fruit snacks, are some of the worst foods for your oral health. The sticky, chewy texture of these snacks can induce tooth damage and decay due to the excessive sugar and acidity they contain. When dried fruit does stick to your teeth, it can increase the risk of tooth decay. The sugar content in these snacks can also feed bacteria in the mouth, encouraging plaque and tooth decay.

  • Sticky candies

Sticky candies, such as caramels, taffy, and gummy bears, cling to your teeth. Those candies can last in your mouth for hours, breaking apart into smaller and smaller pieces. Those tiny pieces can lodge between teeth and along the gum line, providing fuel for bacteria.

  • Alcoholic beverages

Alcoholic beverages are some of the worst things you can put into your mouth. Alcohol is acidic, and when consumed, it damages your teeth and gums. Drinking alcohol increases your risk for oral cancer, gum disease, tooth decay, and dry mouth. Alcohol also acts as a diuretic, which means your body will excrete water rather than retain water. This can lead to dehydration.

  • Coffee

Coffee drinkers, beware. Not only does coffee stain your teeth, but coffee is also acidic in nature. Acidic foods and drinks can wear down the enamel on your teeth and leave them vulnerable to decay and sensitivity.

  • Sports drinks

Perhaps one of the biggest surprises for our team is that sports drinks are one of the worst foods for oral health. Many people assume that sports drinks are healthy because they have electrolytes, which are essential to oral health. However, sports drinks also have a lot of sugar and acid. This makes them one of the worst foods for oral health. Acid erodes enamel, which weakens teeth. Sugar fuels bacteria, which can then lead to more dental problems like cavities and gum disease.

  • Wine

Wine contains tannins, which are known to stain and discolor teeth. Tannins can weaken the enamel of your teeth, making them more susceptible to damage and decay. If you do enjoy an occasional glass of wine, make sure to rinse your mouth with water or mouthwash in order to remove the wine from your teeth.

  • Hard candy

Hard candy is one of the worst foods for your oral health because of its thin texture. Biting down on hard candy can crack and chip your teeth. It can also damage your dental fillings and veneers. Hard candy can also get stuck in the grooves of your teeth, which makes it even more difficult to remove. This can cause major dental problems.

  • Tobacco products

Tobacco products have at least 28 carcinogens, which cause cancer. Cigarettes, in particular, are highly addictive and, when consumed, cause bad breath, gum disease, staining, and chronic bad breath. Smoking and chewing tobacco make your teeth look yellow and stained. The staining of teeth from tobacco is irreversible.

For more information about the best oral care, call (669) 327-5623 or visit Impressions Dentistry at 1325 1st Street, Gilroy, CA 95020.

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