Lebanon Reporter

Features

July 2, 2013

Brush up on foods that are good for teeth

When my boys recently had their teeth checked, their dentist warned them that summer is the worst time for cavities. Parental rules relax, allowing more candy and soda into the mix at the same time brushing slackens.

As much as I hate to admit it, I can see this happening in our household. Does anyone else have a tween boy who thinks brushing and showering are a sprint? He has mastered speed, but effectiveness . . . not so much. I'm not sure those teeth are being cleaned as they should.

Tooth decay begins with bacteria that naturally live in the mouth. These bacteria burn sugar in order to thrive and during this process convert sugar into acid. The acid then eats away at a tooth's enamel, which begins the decay and cavity process.

So sugary foods such as candy, soda, sports drinks and ice cream provide fuel for the bacteria, but there is actually a trifecta of criteria that make foods bad for teeth: anything that has sugar or acid or is sticky.

Food-based causes of tooth decay

- Sugary foods fuel bacteria.

- Many children consume their sweet or gummy vitamins after they brush their teeth, so the sugar remains on their teeth all morning.

- Sticky foods such as Skittles, Starburst candies, gummies and dried fruits linger on the teeth, giving the bacteria extra occasion to execute damage.

- Long-lasting fare, such as lollipops, Jolly Ranchers and cough drops, allows the sugar to dawdle in the mouth for a prolonged period.

- Starchy foods such as french fries, white bread and pretzels that easily lodge between teeth are quickly converted to sugar by the pre-digestive saliva.

- Acidic foods and drinks such as soda, citrus and tomatoes eat away the enamel of teeth.

- Chewing on ice can cause tiny fractures in the teeth that over time collect extra bacteria and cause additional breakage.

Text Only
Features

Featured items
Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter
AP Video
Raw: Deadly Bombing in Egypt Raw: What's Inside a Commercial Jet Wheel Well Raw: Obama Arrives in Japan for State Visit Raw: Anti-Obama Activists Fight Manila Police Motels Near Disney Fighting Homeless Problem Michigan Man Sees Thanks to 'bionic Eye' Obama to Oso: We'll Be Here As Long As It Takes Bon Jovi Helps Open Low-income Housing in Philly Pipeline Opponents Protest on National Mall Hagel Gets Preview of New High-tech Projects S.C. Man Apologizes for Naked Walk in Wal-Mart New Country Music Hall of Fame Inductees Named 'Piles' of Bodies in South Sudan Slaughter SCOTUS Hears Tv-over-Internet Case Chief Mate: Crew Told to Escape After Passengers Iowa College Finds Beauty in Bulldogs
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide