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Foods to Avoid for Better Oral Health

Having a thorough oral health routine can go a long way in keeping your mouth healthy. However, if you want to take your oral health to the next level, you should examine your diet. You can consume foods that negatively affect your oral health. 

Woman selecting candy to eat while working preventative dentistry dentist in Indianapolis Indiana


Many people are aware that candy is not good for your teeth. This is because sugar reacts with bacteria in your mouth, creating acid. This acid eats away at the enamel on your teeth. Your enamel is the outer coating of your teeth that protects the delicate inner portions of your teeth. Of course, eating sugar in moderation can help to minimize its damage. In addition, brushing and flossing your teeth are another defense against tooth decay or gum disease.

On top of the sugar affecting your teeth, there are other elements of candy that can be worse for your teeth. Sticky sweets like toffee, caramel, or bubble gum can damage existing dental work or appliances. If you have dental veneers, crowns, braces, or other dental work, sticky candies can pull them out of place. Additionally, it can help the sugar stick to your teeth. 


You may not think of ice when it comes to food. However, many people chew ice when they finish their drinks or as a crunchy snack. Unfortunately, chewing ice is terrible for your teeth. In fact, chewing ice is a common way that people chip or break their teeth. Generally, your teeth cannot handle the excess stress that chewing ice places on your teeth. As a result, you are likely to chip one of the ridges on your teeth or fracture them entirely. Also, chewing ice can eventually wear down your teeth and enamel. This can increase your chances of developing tooth decay. 

Additionally, chewing ice puts extra strain on your jaw. Over time, you may develop a condition called temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ). TMJ can cause pain and discomfort in your jaw and face. Sometimes, you may only experience popping or clicking in your joint. However, severe cases of TMJ can cause your jaw to lock, making it painful to open and close your mouth. 


Sugary sodas, energy drinks, or sports drinks contain high amounts of sugar. In liquid form, the sugar clings to your teeth, increasing the likelihood of developing cavities. In addition, the carbonation in sodas and energy drinks encourages acid formation in your mouth. This acid will destroy your enamel. Even if you consume diet drinks, your teeth are still exposed to acid.

If you drink dark-colored sodas, you can also alter the color of your teeth. Dark liquids can leave surface stains on your teeth. While you can remove some surface stains with whitening toothpaste, the discoloration can worsen over time. When the acid damages your enamel, it allows the dark color to seep deeper into your teeth. This makes whitening your teeth more difficult. In fact, you may need a professional whitening treatment to lift the shades of your teeth.