The holidays are approaching, and this means an increase in sugar consumption for many people. When you place special treats around the house for family and guests to graze on, chances are you’ll be munching on the morsels as well. In the spirit of the upcoming holiday season, your Chicago cosmetic dentist, Dr. James Fondriest, would like to advise you of the best (and worst) sweets for your teeth.
Treats that Won’t Leave You Aching
- Sugar free lollipops and hard candies These sweets increase salivary flow, which prevents dry mouth. Plaque builds up on your teeth faster when your mouth is dry, leading to an increased risk of cavities.
- Sugar free gum Chewing gum can actually help prevent cavities by freeing food particles that are stuck to the teeth, while also stimulating saliva, which neutralizes the acids of the mouth and prevents tooth decay.
- Dark chocolate Recent studies indicate that the antioxidants in dark chocolate can be good for the heart and may possibly lower blood pressure. Just remember to eat in moderation.
Steer Clear of These Candies
- Sugary treats This includes candy corn, candy canes, cupcakes, and cookies. Sugar is a major contributor to tooth decay.
- Sticky/chewy/gummy sweets Taffy, caramel treats, and even dried fruits will get lodged in the crevices between teeth and set up camp for cavities to form. They can also damage previous dental work.
- Sour candies These treats are extremely acidic. In fact, some sour candies are as acidic as battery acid, according to the Minnesota Dental Association. Acid causes irreversible damage to tooth structure and eats away at tooth enamel, which is the protective outer layer of the tooth.
Besides watching what you eat, you should always brush twice daily, floss daily, and attend regular dental checkups. To schedule an appointment with your Chicago cosmetic dentist Dr. James Fondriest, contact Lake Forest Dental Arts at 847-234-0517 today. Our 60045 dentist is located in Lake Forest and serves patients from the North Shore suburbs.