Teeth whitening, regular dental cleanings and good maintenance aren’t the only sure-fire ways to get that pearly-white smile. Making a habit of consuming the right foods is also a viable path to a whiter smile.
Crunchy fruits and vegetables – or any crunchy foods for that matter – like apples, celery and carrots serve as a cleaning agent for your teeth and wear away tartar and plaque. The rough texture helps stimulate saliva, a natural cleaning agent that’s always working to break down bacteria.
Dairy products. Everyday dairy products like cheese, milk and yogurt are also helpful. Yogurt in particular contains good bacteria or “probiotics” that neutralize the acids that strip away tooth enamel. Studies show that those who eat more yogurt tend to get less cavities. Dairy is also a great source of Vitamin D and Calcium, essentials for healthy teeth.
Fruits. Trade in those high-sodium snack foods for fruits. In addition to apples, choose fruits like pineapples that are able to break down bacteria like gingivitis that builds up and causes cavities.
Here are a few things you should try to stay away from or at least limit the amount you eat.
Oranges and Grapefruit. A couple of healthy foods you should eat in moderation are acidic fruits like oranges and grapefruit. They may be a great source of Vitamin C, but the phosphoric and citric acids they contain can do more harm than good if not regulated.
Sugar. Sugar should stay in your mouth for the least amount of time possible. It’s even recommended you get into the habit of drinking through a straw rather than drinking straight from the cup to avoid the sugar being swished around in your mouth.
Dried fruits. This one may come as a surprise, but much like gooey, long-lasting candy, once these “healthy” snacks get wedged in the nooks of your teeth, they’ll start to slowly eat away at the enamel.
Some signs you may be experiencing enamel loss:
- Yellowing teeth, with the tips being whiter than the rest of the tooth
- Sensitivity to extreme heat or cold can signal the thinning of enamel
- Small dents, or “cupping”, on the teeth
- Smooth or shiny surfaces
- Irregular edges
- Transparency shows the enamel has already started to wear