Did you know that eating right isn’t only important to your general health and wellbeing, it’s also important to your oral health, too? The foods and beverages you choose to consume directly—and we mean directly—affect the health of your teeth and gums. Obviously, your mouth is the point of entry for everything you eat and drink, so it should come as no surprise that your diet affects your oral health. With this in mind, Dr. Michael Michel and his staff in Topeka, KS, would like to offer some advice on how you can eat well and maintain your oral health, too.
What Foods Should You Eat?
Let’s begin by focusing on the foods that are helpful to your teeth and gums. First, dairy products such as cheese, milk and plain yogurt, along with calcium-fortified tofu, leafy greens and almonds, are foods that benefit dental health. These foods are high in calcium, which strengthens teeth just as it does bones. Protein-rich foods such as meat, poultry, fish, milk and eggs are good sources of phosphorus. Both calcium and phosphorus fortify and rebuild tooth enamel.
Even though fresh fruits and vegetables contain some sugars, they balance that out with fiber and water to clean your teeth, making them a healthy diet choice. Fruits and vegetables also stimulate saliva production to rinse decay-causing acids and food particles away from teeth and gums. Plus, many contain vitamin C, which promotes healthy gums, and vitamin A, another nutrient that builds tooth enamel.
What Foods and Drinks Should You Avoid?
The foods and drinks you try to avoid in order to maintain a healthy diet and healthy weight are essentially the same foods you should avoid for the sake of your dental health. Sweet treats—candy (especially hard or sticky candy), cookies, cakes, muffins—all contain sugars that stick to your teeth. The bacteria in your mouth thrive on these sugars and release acids that cause tooth decay. Likewise starchy foods, such as potato chips and crackers, have the same effect.
Sodas, juices, sweetened teas and coffee, some sports drinks, lemonade and limeade literally bathe your teeth in sugar, which causes tooth decay. Choose water instead, and occasionally choose tap water, which is fluoridated.
Call Our Office Today
In conjunction with a healthy diet, regular dental checkups are a must for maintaining oral health. So, schedule an appointment with Dr. Michel in Topeka, KS. We also conveniently serve patients in Emporia, Lawrence and Manhattan and surrounding areas.