It’s so easy to be lost in a world of taste and flavor, not being mindful of what we eat and how it affects us. But then again, I’m guessing that’s what dentists are for, right? To clean up our messes and make our teeth brand new again? Even still, we can do our part in ensuring that our visits to the dentist don’t end up with us being scolded for our bad choices. So that’s why I’m here to make things easier by highlighting 6 foods that are cringe worthy in our dentists’ eyes, some you simply won’t believe.
Can you guess what it is? We hate to love it because of how its pumps us and keeps us on our toes especially when our days run on, yep, our beloved friend ‘Sports/Energy Drinks’. As they are packed with sugar and acids, and because we tend to swish sports drinks around in our mouths, the potential for cavities and erosion is even more significant. They are super acidic, and they have low pH and high sugar content.
Ice! I mean think about it, our body needs water right, so how can it hurt if that water is no longer in a liquid state, doesn’t it have the same benefits? Not quite. Dental experts say nibbling on ice is a major no-no as it can easily crack or break teeth; according to Jon Marashi, DDS, “Ice is simply too hard for tooth enamel and causes stress fractures in the teeth, It can even break a piece of your tooth.” So no chewing or crushing ice with our beloved teeth anymore, because ice is for chilling, not chewing.
Candy. But to be fair that’s a given. Sweets in general does more harm than good, not only to our teeth but our body on a whole, so it’s no surprise that it topped the list. “Sucking on candies exposes your mouth to harsh sugars for longer periods of time,” Dr. Lepine says. “And chewing on them can break or crack teeth, fillings, and sealants.” Whether hard or gummy candies, they all stick to areas of the tooth, and the longer contact the sweets have with the teeth, the more acid gets produced by cavity-causing bacteria.
Raise of eyebrows (since I can’t see your hands) for those who go to movies. Me too. And have you ever gone and not purchase either a small medium or large bucket of popcorn? Never. It’s a traditional movie food that goes back ages before our birth. So what would a movie be without this fun, light, easy snack? Kind of boring actually, maybe, never done it so this is purely speculation. But as delectable as popcorn is, we all know that horrible feeling of getting a piece of popcorn stuck in our gums — and it’s no surprise that our dentist hates it just as much as we do. New York City dentist Jonathan Neman, DDS, told Reader’s Digest, “Countless number of people come in with cracked teeth from eating half-popped popcorn kernels, not to mention the sneaky husk.”
He added, “Popcorn husk is notorious for finding its way in between teeth and causing gum pain, too.” Much like potato chips, popcorn can wedge between teeth and foster bacterial growth. Un-popped kernels are even worse. “When it gets to the bottom of the bag, people don’t realize that biting on kernels can break your teeth,” Dr. Dorfman says.
Alcohol: Aside from the staining and the sugar, alcohol dries out your mouth, and that makes you more prone to cavities. “There’s a reason why your mouth salivates,” says Romo. “[Saliva] washes your mouth, it keeps everything clean, and it neutralizes the mouth so it’s not acidic.” People who drink excessively may find their saliva flow is reduced over time, which can lead to tooth decay and other oral infections such as gum disease. Heavy alcohol use also increases your risk for mouth cancer.
Coffee/Black Tea: In their natural form, coffee and tea can be healthy beverage choices. Unfortunately too many people can’t resist adding sugar. Caffeinated coffee and tea can also dry out your mouth. Frequent drinks of coffee and tea may also stain your teeth due to the tannins that they carry.
So there you have it, 6 little things that we intake regularly without a second thought that apparently seems to do more harm than good. I’m sure now that on your next dental visit, your dentist would not cringe as much.