Your dental dilemmas solved by Dr Hina Khaliq from Avenue Dental
Focus on oral hygiene & diet
Every time you eat or drink anything sugary, your teeth are under acid attack which can last for up to one hour. This is because the sugar will react with the bacteria in plaque (the sticky coating on your teeth) and produce harmful acids. All sugars can cause decay; be aware that sugar can come in many forms, such as sucrose, fructose, maltose and glucose. These sugars can all damage your teeth. The only way to reduce these affects is by cutting down how often you have sugary foods, which will limit the amount of time your teeth are at risk.
Acidic foods and drinks can be just as harmful to your teeth. The acid wears away the enamel, which can make your teeth sensitive and less attractive.
Food and drinks that contain acid include citrus fruits, fizzy drinks, smoothies, fruit juice and fruit teas - so avoid where possible. A diet that is rich in vitamins, minerals and fresh fruit and vegetables can help to prevent gum disease which can lead to tooth loss and cause bad breath. It is better for your teeth and general health if you eat three meals a day plus no more than two snacks, instead of having lots of snack attacks. If you do eat fruit as a snack, try to eat something alkaline such as cheese afterwards which has a high pH number and can cancel out the acid effects.
Savoury snacks are better, such as raw vegetables, nuts, cheese and breadsticks. Chewing gum makes your mouth produce more saliva, which helps to cancel out the acid in your mouth after eating or drinking. It has been proven that using sugar-free chewing gum after meals can prevent tooth decay. However, it is important to only use sugar-free gum, as ordinary chewing gum contains sugar and therefore may damage your teeth.