Just because a food is healthy doesn't mean it's good for your teeth! You might have grown up believing that certain foods are good for maintaining oral health, and in reality, they end up damaging your teeth or gums in the long run. Make sure you know whether the foods you're eating are really good for your teeth!
1. Dried Fruits
Most people assume that fruits are good for your teeth, but this type of fruit is not. Fresh fruit is a far better choice, as you'll benefit from the nutritional value. Fresh fruit has enough other natural ingredients with nothing else added that you won't cause damage to your teeth and gums until you're snacking on it more than a dozen times per day! Dried fruit, on the other hand, often has too much sugar. Foods like raisins can stick to your teeth and cause rapid plaque growth.
2. Orange Juice
Another type of food that can cause damage to your teeth is orange juice. Again, because it's made from fruits, people tend to assume that it's healthy. The reality is that the high acid content of orange juice can actually cause more harm than good. Try low-acid orange juice, or be sure to brush your teeth promptly. The same rules apply to oranges, a citrusy fruit that can benefit your gums but not your teeth.
3. Dairy Products
Make no mistake, these foods can be a good source of calcium, but they frequently contain lactose and other sugars that can do damage to your teeth. A glass of warm milk before bed may be soothing, but this is one of the worst decisions you can make in terms of dental health! Low-fat or fat-free dairy products are the way to go. Consider increasing your consumption of leafy green vegetables to meet your calcium requirements.
You might think that eating white bread and pasta will keep your teeth clean, but this logic is completely backwards. They are processed as sugar, and when they stick in the grooves of your teeth, they encourage acid and plaque. Whole-grain carbs are always a better choice when possible, and if you have carb-heavy meals, be sure to drink non-sugary beverages with them and brush your teeth to get them good and clean afterwards.
5. Citrus Fruits
You might have heard that lemons, limes, kiwis, grapefruit, and other types of citrus fruit (including oranges, which are covered above under “orange juice”) are good for your gums. This is true, because the vitamin C in them can encourage healthy gums, but the acid in them can also damage your teeth. Consume these fruits in moderation to maximize their gum health benefits.
These are just a few foods that you may think are good for your teeth. Some of these foods are not actually going to cause much damage when eaten in moderation, of course, but try to remember the potential negative impact they can have on dental health before overindulging. Sugars and acids are among the riskiest ingredients you can find in your food.
Guest post contributed by Robert Anders, on behalf of Dr. Hung at RockCenter Orthodontics. Robert is an experienced dental technician and in his spare time he enjoys passing on helpful dental tips. To find out more about this reputable practice, RockCenter Orthodontics, visit their website.