Watching what you eat and drink is an important part of maintaining your health. But it can be difficult to properly choose a diet, especially with so many factors to consider. One aspect that Dr. James Fondriest, a cosmetic dentist in Lake Forest, IL, is particularly concerned about is your oral health.
Last week, we talked about six beverages and foods that stain teeth. In this series, we’ll talk about six foods and drinks that are good for your oral health.
Today, let’s focus on the beverages:
- Water: Everyone should consume about 64 ounces (eight glasses) of water each day. You probably know that water keeps your skin and internal organs healthy. Water also prevents tooth decay by neutralizing harmful acids in your mouth and cleaning your mouth of food debris and plaque. Fluoridated water helps strengthen tooth enamel.
- Green tea: This drink is a natural source of fluoride. Green tea contains other compounds (like catechins and polyphenols) which can reduce bacteria growth in the mouth and inflammation. The tea can strengthen your tooth enamel and decrease your risk for gum disease.
- Milk: You’ve probably heard that this drink is good for your health since childhood. And it’s true: milk can neutralize bacteria, remineralize teeth, and strengthen bones. Milk contains calcium and phosphorous, both of which are particularly important for developing teeth and bones; vitamin A, which maintains mucous membranes in your mouth; and Vitamin D, which promotes calcium absorption for bone growth and strength.
You should avoid sports drinks (because they are high in citric acid, which can damage tooth enamel), sodas (because they are high in sugar, and even diet sodas contain erosion-causing phosphoric acid), and juice, coffee, tea, or other drinks sweetened with sugar. If you consume those beverages, rinse your mouth with water afterwards.
Stay tuned for the next installment to learn about three foods that are great for your teeth. Keeping the right foods and beverages in your home is a great way to keep your whole body healthy, and that’s a reason to smile!
Dr. James Fondriest can give you a smile you’ll be proud to take care of. Call Lake Forest Dental Arts at 847.234.0517 for your appointment or consultation. Dr. Fondriest is a conservative cosmetic dentist who serves patients from the greater Chicago area, as well as the North Shore suburbs.