What's Worse Than Sugar For Your Teeth?

Friday, June 29th, 2012, 5:37 pm

Candy and sugary drinks are not the worst thing you can consume when it comes to your smile – sour flavored candy and drinks are even worse because these foods are typically flavored with citric acid.

These acidic foods erode tooth enamel and soften teeth. “Citric acid is the worst acid for your teeth” said Dr. Martha Keels, Chief of Pediatric Dentistry and Duke’s Children’s Hospital. Especially bad are the sour, sticky, sugary candies aimed at kids like Warheads and Toxic Waste. These candies have such a low pH that it is close to battery acid

Kids tooth enamel doesn’t mature until about 10 years after the tooth has erupted which makes eating this stuff even worse. The combination of soft enamel and highly acidic, sticky candy can lead to rampant, serious tooth decay.

Just because adults don’t eat this type of candy doesn’t mean they are safe from acidic foods. Energy drinks are highly acidic and are being used more and more often. Soft drinks, including those that are sugar-free are acidic and damaging as well. Adults should also watch out for the acid/sugar combo hidden in products like sour mango Altoids and other types of breath mints.

If you are going to consume foods that are highly acidic you should include them with a meal which will minimize the effects. Chewing gum containing xylitol immediately afterward can also help protect your teeth. Although brushing immediately sounds like a good idea you need to wait. Brushing enamel that has been softened by acids can cause additional damage and make matters worse. Rinsing with water is a better bet.

If you are experiencing sensitive teeth you may have some dental erosion. Please contact Wilbanks Smile Center in Toccoa, GA today at 706-886-9439 to schedule your appointment and find out more about protecting and repairing your smile.

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Category: cavities, oral health

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