Your diet plays a crucial role in preventing cavities, gum disease, and other serious dental issues. The food you eat can provide energy for bacteria to grow and multiply, leading to tooth decay. Foods that cause cavities can also work through acidity and other factors.
Here are eight foods and drinks that you may not realize can cause cavities:
1. Diet Soda
Diet soda might seem like a safer alternative than regular soda since it has no sugar. However, it can still seriously impact your oral health. Soda, like other carbonated beverages, is acidic. It can weaken your enamel even without sugar. Additionally, many of the sugar-free sweeteners used are still capable of supporting bacterial growth.
2. Fruit Juice
Fruit juice is often touted as a healthy choice but can also harm teeth. It’s often particularly enjoyed among children; just like adults, children are susceptible to cavities. In fact, 52% of children between 6 and 8 have had at least one cavity. 1
The high sugar content in many fruit juices poses a cavity risk. This is true even in natural juice with no added sugar, as there are still natural sugars.
3. Citrus Fruits
Fruits are among the healthiest foods available, but it may surprise you that they can still increase your risk of cavities. Citrus fruits, such as oranges, lemons, and limes, have high levels of citric acids, which is where the acids get their name from. These acids can weaken enamel, but simply rinsing your mouth after eating a fruit can help.
4. Dried Fruits
Dried fruits aren’t all that distinguishable from candy. They have the sugar content of a piece of fruit packed into a tighter space, creating a sticky and gooey texture. Dried fruit can stick to teeth for prolonged periods, providing a long-term food source for bacteria.
5. Alcoholic Beverages
Alcoholic beverages of all kinds are harmful to your teeth. Alcohol dries out your mouth, which creates a more suitable environment for bacteria. Most alcoholic drinks are also acidic, whether due to carbonation or ingredients, such as soda and fruit juice. Many also have high sugar content.
6. Crackers and Chips
Crackers and chips may have less sugar than many other foods that cause cavities, but they’re still a notable threat to your oral health. These crumbly foods tend to cause little bits of food to stick to your teeth and lodge in between them. This provides lasting time for bacteria to thrive.
7. Pasta Sauce
Could your next plate of spaghetti contribute to cavities? Pasta sauce and other foods containing tomatoes are often highly acidic. Like an acidic beverage, this can weaken your enamel and leave your teeth susceptible to tooth decay.
8. Sports Drinks
Sports drinks are typically intended to help support an athlete’s health and recovery after strenuous, severe activity. However, they generally aren’t good for their teeth. Along with electrolytes, sports drinks are typically loaded with plenty of sugar. They aren’t too different from other types of sugary drinks.
Protect Your Smile Against Foods That Cause Cavities
Many foods and drinks can harm your smile. However, avoiding the most notable ones and keeping up with routine dental care can go a long way in protecting your smile against tooth decay and gum disease.
You can count on Albion Family Dental for the preventive care, dental exams, and teeth cleaning you need to support a strong and healthy smile. Schedule your next appointment with an experienced dentist in Albion, NY, today. Call at (585) 589-9044.