10 Of The Worst Foods For Your Kid's Teeth
We all want to protect our teeth in the best ways we can. After all, we only get one set for our lifetime! Most of us already know that brushing two times a day and flossing at least once a day are great ways to protect our teeth from cavities and other damage. But did you know that we can also protect our teeth by eliminating certain foods?
The truth is, some foods are better than others for our teeth. Let's look at 10 different foods that we should avoid if we want to keep our pearly whites in good health!
1. Sweets That Stick
Many people love candies like taffy, caramels and others sticky sweets. But these foods can be very damaging to our teeth. First of all, they always contain lots of sugar, which can hurt our tooth enamel and cause cavities. Next, these sticky candies often get really stuck to our teeth, and they can be very difficult to remove even when you brush and floss.
2. Carbonated Soft Drinks
Soda pop is a favorite beverage of many children and adults, but it gives our bodies almost no benefits. Our teeth suffer the most. Carbonated soft drinks like cola contain lots of acid. This acid weakens our tooth enamel. Most sodas also include tons of sugar, which causes cavities. This stuff is so bad that all of the 4th grade classes at my daughter's school did their final science project about it.
3. Some Fruit Juices, Sports Drinks, and Energy Drinks
You may think that if you don't drink carbonated soft drinks, you should switch to fruit juices and sports drinks. Unfortunately, these drinks can be just as bad as soda pop. Many of them contain just as much sugar and acid. And those energy drinks... Is there anything good to say about them? Bad for body, terrible for teeth.
4. Super Starchy Foods
Starchy foods include many carbohydrates. For example, super starchy foods that you or your kids might eat regularly are rice, bread, pasta, crackers, and goldfish. These foods are not terrible, but because of their squishiness, they often get wedged between teeth. In addition, they can contain more simple sugar than you think and erode your precious tooth enamel.
5. Hard Candies
Candies include food items like peppermints, suckers, and lemon drops and even cough drops. Most of these candies contain tons of sugar. If you suck on these candies, the sugar provides perfect nutrition for the bacteria in your mouth. If you decide to chew hard candies, they can actually crack or even break your teeth.
6. Dried Fruits
Your mom might have told you that dried fruits are good for you. The truth, is you’re better off sticking to regular fruits that have not been dried. This is because to dry the fruits, manufacturers put tons of sugar in them, and fruit already has a lot of sugar! That’s what makes them so sweet. Finally, you have probably noticed that dried fruits like raisins and cranberries are very chewy. Unfortunately, this makes them perfect for lodging between teeth and making problems.
7. Dark Foods
This category includes foods like red pasta sauce and soy sauce. The enamel that covers our teeth can be damaged by these foods. Your teeth might turn yellow or brown (eek!), and the acidity in foods like tomato sauce and tomatoes can temporarily make your teeth more porous. This invites problems. If you love these foods, don’t fret. Just try to swish water in your mouth afterwards, or better yet, brush.
Pickles might taste yummy with a grilled cheese sandwich, but they’re not doing your teeth any favors. That’s because pickles are made with vinegar, and that acidic vinegar can erode tooth enamel and make way for those darn cavities to enter. But if you rinse and/or brush afterwards you can pickle away to your hearts delight!
9. Canned Fruits
Canned fruits and regular, fresh fruits are not created equal. Canned fruits like peaches or apricots are often bathed in sugary syrup. As we know, sugar is not our teeth’s friend. All that syrup coats every one of your teeth and sits there causing trouble until you brush. If you do eat canned fruits, choose those that are in water instead of syrup.
10. Popcorn and Corn on the Cob
Popcorn and corn on the cob are natural foods that can actually be healthy for you. Unfortunately, you have probably already noticed that when you bite into a corncob, the bits of corn get stuck all over your teeth. Kernels from popcorn can frequently get stuck in your teeth as well. These stuck bits of corn can be hard to get out. They can create gum infections, and if you have braces, they can cause damage to brackets and orthodontic wires. You know what's coming next. Brush it and floss it so you can enjoy it :-)