Foods That Damage Teeth
Food and Damaged Teeth
Hard candies and suckers
We all know they contain sugar, but what we don’t know is that the constant “sugar bath” (constant exposure to sugar), can be extremely harmful to teeth. Sugar makes an acid in mouth and with the constant release of sugar, they are considered a high risk for causing cavities. They are also very hard and can break or crack teeth. Chew sugarless gum instead, look for a gum the ADA seal of approval.
Yes, ice can damage your teeth. Ice is hard and can break or crack teeth. Many dental emergencies are caused by ice chewing. Please kick the habit of ice chewing.
Citrus although can be a healthy food contain citric acid. Acidic foods can cause enamel erosion. Adding lemon and lime juice to drinks can be very damaging to enamel. Acidic foods may also cause mouth sores. Always drink plenty of water to keep acid down in your mouth.
Coffee and tea without sugar may not be so bad. Adding sugar can make it a really bad choice of drink. Adding sugar can cause cavities. Most people do not realize how many teaspoons of sugar a day they add to their diet, just by drinking coffee with sugar. Please try to cut out sugar in your coffee. Coffee and tea drinkers tend to have dry mouth. Drink more water to help with this. Also, coffee and tea drinkers can stain teeth. The more you drink increases your chances for stained teeth.
Starchy foods such as chips, crackers and such can damage your teeth. These kinds of foods can get trapped in between teeth or on “tops” of your teeth. By not removing these foods by brushing and flossing can build up plaque, which can lead to tooth decay. Please brush, floss and drink plenty of water to wash away left-over particles.
Raisins, dried fruit, sticky candies can all lead to tooth decay. These types of foods are very damaging because they are sticky they “cling” to teeth and don’t let go. The longer food sticks on teeth the more damage they do. Please keep this in mind when eating and rinse with water, brush and floss to remove the sticky foods from teeth.
We have all heard this before, but soda is bad for your teeth. Most people sip on soda throughout the day. Particularly when you’re at work or on the road. This can cause your teeth to bathe in sugar, acid and caffeine. The constant sugar swishing will lead to decay in a short amount of time. You have sugar and then add the acid content of soda and this makes it an extremely bad choice. Most sodas have the acid content rivaling battery acid. Who would drink battery acid? That is pretty close to what you’re doing. Please choose water instead.
We have all seen commercials about how sports drinks help replenishes you after sports. What isn’t told is the sugar content in sports drinks. Please research this yourself. Some are worse than others. Find out the amount of sugar before you drink. Water is a good choice for replenishment without the added sugar content. Your teeth will thank you.
Alcohol causes dehydration and dries your mouth. Dry mouth can increase cavities. Once saliva flow is limited, decay chances increase. What also increases is the chance of gum disease and oral cancer.
Wisdom Teeth Extraction
At your dental exam, an X-ray may be taken to evaluate your wisdom teeth. The X-ray will show the Dentist how your wisdom teeth have developed and the positioning of the teeth.
The dentist may recommend that you have your wisdom teeth extracted to prevent future problems. Removing wisdom teeth at the proper time will prevent complications that could arise if done at a later time. Removal of wisdom teeth at a younger age is usually easier, this is due to the roots not being fully developed and bone is less dense than adult bone. The healing process tends to be shorter for younger people.
The difficulty of the removal process depends upon the development and positioning of teeth. If the tooth is present above the gum, it tends to be easier to remove. If a tooth is below gum and embedded in bone, it can be difficult to remove. The dentist may remove the tooth in smaller pieces to make it easier to remove.
Healing time for the extractions depend on several different factors, 1. The difficulty of extraction 2. Your general health 3. The compliance of following post-operative instructions.
The dentist will give you post-operative instructions when the extractions are completed. Please follow the guidelines he/she gives you. They may include liquid/soft foods, no rinsing, no drinking from straw, no smoking, avoiding hot beverages and taking medications as directed. There may be more depending on your unique situation.
If you have questions about the removal of your wisdom teeth, call our office and we can help answer for you. We want you to feel comfortable and informed before the removal of your wisdom teeth.
Baby Bottle Tooth Decay
What’s baby bottle tooth decay?
Baby bottle tooth decay is caused by the frequent and long-term exposure of a child's teeth to liquids containing sugars. Among these liquids are milk, formula, fruit juice, sodas and other sweetened drinks. The sugars in these liquids pool around the infant's teeth and gums, feeding the bacteria that cause plaque. Every time a child consumes a sugary liquid, acid attacks the teeth and gums. After numerous attacks, tooth decay can begin.
The condition also is associated with breast-fed infants who have prolonged feeding habits or with children whose pacifiers are frequently dipped in honey, sugar or syrup. The sweet fluids left in the mouth increases the chance of cavities while the infant is sleeping.
How can I prevent baby bottle tooth decay?
First, never allow children to fall asleep with a bottle containing milk, formula, juice or other sweetened liquids. Make sure to clean and massage the baby's gums once a day to help create healthy teeth and to assist in teething. Wrap a moistened washcloth around the finger and gently massage the gums and tissues.
Brushing should begin when the first baby tooth erupts. When brushing a child's teeth, use a soft toothbrush and a pea-shaped amount of toothpaste. Before a child can spit, be sure to use non-fluoride toothpaste. However, once a child is able to spit, you should use fluoride toothpaste. Parents should first bring their child to the dentist when the child is between 6 and 12 months old.
Will changes in my child's diet help prevent baby bottle tooth decay?
Preventing baby bottle tooth decay can involve changes in a child's diet. A series of small changes over a period of time is usually easier, and eventually leads to better oral health.
To incorporate these changes:
Why should I be worried about baby bottle tooth decay?
Giving an infant a sugary drink at nap or nighttime is harmful because during sleep, the flow of saliva decreases, allowing the sugary liquids to linger on the child's teeth for an extended period of time. If left untreated, pain and infection can result. Severely decayed teeth may need to be extracted. If teeth are infected or lost too early due to baby bottle tooth decay, your child may develop poor eating habits, speech problems, crooked teeth and damaged adult teeth. Healthy baby teeth will usually result in healthy permanent teeth.
If you want to know more about the dental health of your child, please call our office (719) 564-6464
Keeping Teeth Straight after Braces
Wear your retainer faithfully. Your orthodontist will give you specific instructions on how to wear your retainer, the length of time, care instructions and more at the removal appointment. Teeth will tend to gravitate to original alignment, wearing your retainer will keep them in position.
The top reasons people do not wear retainers are:
If any of the above problems arise, please visit your orthodontist or dentist ASAP. A new retainer could be made to keep teeth from shifting any further. Who wants to go through another round of orthodontics??
If you think that a night or two without the retainer is not going to affect the teeth—think again. The retainer may not fit even after a couple of nights without wearing. If this happens, again please call your orthodontist and do not procrastinate.
If any questions arise, please call your orthodontist.
For special needs children, especially children with autism, a trip to the dentist can be a great challenge. Children with certain developmental disabilities are at a higher risk for oral health conditions, so finding a dentist experienced in working with and treating these children may be the answer. Our staff has taken additional education on care for children with special needs. Preparing your special needs child for a dentist visit is paramount for having a positive experience (for everyone!). How much preparation you do beforehand depends on your child’s particular emotional and physical needs. Regardless of how much preparation you have done, the first appointment still may be a challenging one, but at least you, the dentist, and your child will know what to expect.
What can I tell the Dentist about my child’s needs?
When you visit the Dentist
A visit to the doctor or dentist seems to trigger more anxiety for a child with autism than others with special needs. Because the dentist is very invasive of your personal space, children with autism or Asperger Syndrome may become agitated—even combative. Children with oral defensiveness and sensitivity become distressed when the dentist touches their face or mouth which, in turn, makes the cleaning and brushing of the teeth and checkups more difficult. Parents and caregivers may have to brush the child’s teeth at home because the child refuses to do so. Sensitivity to sounds of machinery, cold metal tools touching sensitive areas of the mouth, other patients’ cries or sounds of distress, and light sources commonly found in the dentist’s office may also trigger behaviors of aggression or agitation. Even the taste of toothpastes, cleaners, and mouthwashes can be intolerable. For some children, the experience is so distressing that sedation may be necessary. Remember that the dentist has your child’s best interest at heart. Everyone involved with your child’s care will already be aware and prepared with the proper and necessary accommodations since you have already discussed this with the dentist beforehand. When your child goes to sit in the dentist chair for the first time, let him/her take along a book or favorite small toy. Our office is a very child-friendly office, it is decorated in themes that appeal to children with TVs and video monitors to look at while the dentist is working. Our dentists are “masters of distraction!” this help with getting the child comfortable with their surroundings and limit stress levels.
Come meet our staff and dentists today.
Let us get your child ready for a lifetime of smiles.
Sleep Dentistry and Children
Our goal is to provide your child with the best possible dental experience. Often times a visit to the dentist can be a terrifying for young children. The whirling sound of the drill or the uncomfortable feeling of pressure on their teeth can make children anxious.
One of the most common ways to ease a child’s anxiety and relax them for their dental treatment is from Nitrous Oxide sedation. This is commonly referred to as laughing gas and is the most popular sedation method in dentistry. It is used quite frequently in our office because it is recommended for children who need small amounts of dental treatment. Sleep Sedation Dentistry For those children with phobias of visiting the dentist or children that require extensive work, general anesthesia – commonly called sleep sedation – can be a good option.
Younger children who need a lot of dental work benefit most from being put to sleep because the dentist can do all of the treatment at once without leaving the child traumatized from the visit. Some older children with inexplicable fear of the dentist who need wisdom teeth extractions or extensive work can also benefit from being put to sleep. Our doctors typically perform dental procedures for children under general anesthesia at our affiliated dental surgery center.
The Pueblo Dental Surgery Center - located a few blocks away – was built to provide a comfortable and relaxing atmosphere for our patients opting moderate to deep sedation for their dental procedures. We can discuss with you the best option for your child based on his or her individual dental needs.
Things to Do before Braces
Get a cleaning and exam before you get braces
Your dentist will examine your teeth to make sure you have no cavities. All cavities need to be filled before you get braces. Brackets or bands may cover surface of cavity so they will need to filled before the orthodontist can place your braces. You will need a good cleaning to remove plaque and tarter. It is harder to clean teeth once braces have been applied. You will also find that flossing will become more difficult.
I know this sounds crazy, but eating certain foods will be off limits. Hard crunchy things like hard pizza crust, popcorn, nuts and even carrots. Eat a few things before you are limited.
Stock up on supplies
You will go through tooth brushes more often because bristles break down more with brackets. You may want to look at a sonic toothbrush to help keep things healthy. You may want to look at flossing options for braces. Everyone likes different products. Get a few and experiment which one works for you. There are some rinses designed for braces. Fluoride rinses can be helpful. Very good oral care will help keep your teeth healthy during orthodontics.
Take a few photos
Teeth move quickly and it is nice to see where your teeth started and the results when you are finished. Promise me you will forget the beginning.
Get some soft foods
Teeth tend to be a little sore after placement. A few soft foods in the house will make it easier to eat and keep your nutrition up. You will be better in a couple of days. Adjustments do not make the teeth as sore as the placement appointment.
Remember it will all be worth it in the end! A beautiful smile it a great result.
Snack Ideas for Healthy Teeth
Sugary snacks taste so good — but they aren't so good for your teeth or your body. Sugary foods that kids love to eat, like candy, cookies, ice cream, if eaten between meals, can cause tooth decay. Starchy snacks can also break down into sugars once they're in your mouth. This is very important especially for kids with diabetes.
How do sugars attack your teeth?
There is bacteria that lives in your mouth all day long. These bacteria form plaque on your teeth throughout the day. When you eat sugar, the bacteria eats the plaque and forms acids which are strong enough to dissolve enamel. Remember that enamel is the strongest part of the human body. So these acids are quick powerful
How can watching my snack consumption help protect me from tooth decay?
Keep a log of what snacks you consume. If the snack has sugars in it, think again about consuming it. Also remember that some sugar snacks actually cause more damage than others. Sticky and chewy sweets stick to the surface of your teeth and because sticky snacks stay in your mouth longer than foods that you quickly chew and swallow, they bath in the sugar longer. This will cause tooth decay.
How often do you eat snacks?
Do you eat sugary snacks throughout the day, or do you usually just have dessert after dinner? Remember acids form in your mouth every time you eat a sugary snack. The acids continue to do damage on your teeth for at least 20 minutes until they are neutralized and can't do any more harm. The more times a day you snack, the more likely acids are building in your mouth and causing damage.
It is best to eat sugary foods at mealtime and not throughout the day. Remember to brush and floss to remove sugary substances from mouth after you consume them.
When you're choosing snacks to eat think about:
Choosing healthy snacks is good for your body and for your teeth.
Healthy choices like raw vegetables, fresh fruits, or whole-grain crackers or bread are smart choices.
Be particular when choosing snacks- you can make wise choices and help keep your teeth shiny and healthy.
Pick a variety of foods from these groups:
-Pretzels (unsalted or low-salt)
- Cereals (unsweetened)
- Plain bagels
Nuts & Seeds
- Pumpkin seeds (unsalted or low-salt)
- Sunflower seeds (unsalted or low-salt)
- Nuts (unsalted or low-salt)
Meats & Protein
- Baked chicken or turkey
- Peanut butter (unsalted or low-salt)
- Cottage cheese (low or non-fat)
- Yogurt (low or non-fat)
Don't Forget! If you eat sweets, eat them for dessert instead of munching on them throughout the day. And remember to brush and floss your teeth after every snack or meal!
How to Store your Toothbrush
Tooth brushing plays an important everyday role for personal oral hygiene and effective plaque removal. Appropriate toothbrush care and maintenance are also important considerations for sound oral hygiene. The ADA recommends that consumers replace toothbrushes approximately every 3–4 months or sooner if the bristles become frayed with use.
Storing Your Toothbrush Properly
Replace toothbrushes at least every 3–4 months. The bristles become frayed and worn with daily use and the effectiveness will be reduced. Toothbrushes will wear out more rapidly depending on habits associated to each patient. Check brushes often for this type of wear and replace them more frequently if needed. Children’s toothbrushes often need replacing more frequently than adult brushes.
You can google “toothbrush storage” for some fun ways to store your toothbrush. Storage of your toothbrush can be fun and stylish.
There are good and bad associated with gummy vitamins.
1st comes the good news
2nd comes the bad news
What can you do to minimize the risks of chewable vitamins?
You can switch to other types of vitamins (some forms still contain sugar, but they are not adding the sticky component). Please still brush after any food, candy or vitamin to minimize risk to teeth.
Please Brush after taking gummy vitamin to remove any sticky particles left behind. It may be a good idea to floss as well, gummy vitamins can become lodged between teeth which can increase plaque and bacteria causing tooth decay.
If you have any questions on gummy vitamins or any other dental related topic, please ask your dental team.
Young at Heart Dentistry For Kids
2603 Vinewood Ln,
Pueblo, CO 81006
Phone: (719) 564-6464
Young at Heart Dental and Braces with Vision Now!
317 W 3rd St., Suite 104
La Junta, CO 81050