Summertime Snacking & Your Dental Health
Ah, summer! Ice cream cones, frosty frappucinos, salty chips and barbecue treats… it’s a snackers paradise! If you’re concerned with your physical health, you have a good idea of what constitutes a healthy snack – something that will satisfy a bit of hunger, provide a bit of energy and have a low sugar content, among other things. But when you are nibbling at your next summer party, it’s also important to think of what snacks are healthy for your teeth.
Stay Away, Sweet Tooth
Foods that contain a lot of sugar aid in the production of bacteria and eventually tooth decay. Sugary treats like candy, cookies and pies and starchy foods like potato chips, french fries and even dried fruits are not only great choices for your waistline but also are rough on your teeth.
Crunchy fruits and vegetables help promote the creation of saliva in your mouth, which helps flush out the particles and acids that can lead to tooth decay. Nuts, cheese, and meat all provide your body with the calcium and phosphorus it needs to help protect tooth enamel.
And remember, sugar isn’t just in sweet treats. Some of our favorite coffee concoctions and caffeinated sodas contain large sources of sugar. Sipping on these beverages may not seem as bad as snacking but the sugar content can be just as damaging. Moderation is key.
Water is the best choice for a healthy drink for your teeth. It helps to rinse the mouth of sugar and other cavity-causing sources. Milk and unsweetened tea are also safer for teeth.
Proper brushing after snacking helps make sure we’re doing our best to keep bacteria at bay. But we all need a snack sometimes and we don’t always have a toothbrush handy afterward. It’s best to turn to some of the healthy choices above when deciding what to munch on during snack time.