A statement most adults can remember hearing sometime during their childhood, “you are what you eat,” actually has a lot of merit. The foods and beverages that we regularly consume will most definitely have a direct impact on the condition of our teeth and gums, as well as on our general health. If the foods we choose are healthy, containing vital nutrients, our teeth, bones, and body will be stronger. If, our food choices aren’t so great, we are weakening our overall immunity against disease, including cavities.
If a child, or even an adult, were asked to name a cavity-causing food, the primary answer would like be sugar. In our kids’ dentistry practice in Greensboro, we do encourage moderation with sugary treats. The reason is not that sugar causes teeth to decay but because sugar is what oral bacteria feed on before they leave acidic byproduct on teeth.
Cavities are the direct result of acid. The acidic waste of oral bacteria remains on enamel, slowly breaking it down until a pit forms. In the small pit, more acid can build up and eat away at the tooth, causing a cavity.
The unfortunate fact about sugar is that it is lurking in many of the foods and beverages kids enjoy on a daily basis. Because it is nearly impossible to avoid all forms of sugar in our diet, brushing and flossing are crucial to the prevention of cavities. When teeth are brushed and flossed daily as recommended, the food source of aggressive oral bacteria is reduced and their activity decreases.
In addition to avoiding cavities by limiting oral bacteria, there are choices that can be made to build stronger teeth, such as providing kids with plenty of crunchy vegetable snacks that will naturally clean tooth surfaces from plaque and bacteria. Kids can and should learn to love water! With the various recipes for healthy, fruit-infused water available, this task can be much easier.
It is our hope to educate and empower our patients to enjoy lifelong oral health. We are happy to discuss beneficial foods and to demonstrate brushing techniques in support of your goals for your child’s smile.
Contact us at (336) 383-1482 to schedule your child’s visit with Dr. Isharani.