Strawberries Naturally Whiten Teeth

5 Foods That Can Naturally Whiten Your Teeth

We all love having pearly whites! But keeping our teeth white can be a challenge even for those who are vigilant about brushing and flossing their teeth. Untreated teeth stains continue to penetrate the surface, leading to those yellow or beige colors that no one feels comfortable sharing in a smile. We can help with your teeth whitening needs, but we also encourage you to eat healthy and make sure you’re “feeding” your teeth with the vitamins and minerals they need.

Here are five foods to chomp on to help keep your teeth healthy—and white!

 

Strawberries

Who knew that this bright red fruit that can stain our clothes may help whiten your teeth? The enzyme called malic acid in strawberries helps remove discoloration on the surface of teeth. Plus, the antioxidant ellagitannin helps reduce bacteria that attracts stains. When you consider strawberries’ Vitamin C, which helps prevent gum disease, you probably want to add more of these bright red beauties to your diet.

 

The Citrus Group

Get that saliva going with some oranges, lemons, and grapefruit—even pineapple. When you pucker up to citrus flavor, you produce more saliva which contains large amounts of water. That’s a natural way to rinse the bacteria out of your mouth. Also, oranges and pineapple contain the enzyme bromelain, a natural stain remover for teeth.

 

Say Cheese

And eat some, too! Cheese—and yogurt and milk—are great protectors of our pearly whites. You get natural calcium and phosphorus when you eat dairy, two wonderful minerals that help strengthen your teeth and gums. The lactic acid in dairy helps prevent tooth decay and chomping on hard cheeses produces more saliva, a natural rinse for your mouth. It’s a win-win-win!

 

The Crunchers

Crunchy natural foods produce saliva and saliva…are you sensing a theme here? That’s right. We can’t overstate the impact saliva plays in naturally rinsing your mouth of food and bacteria. Plus, saliva helps reduce the buildup of plaque. Food stains love sticking to plaque, so the more ways you can naturally reduce plaque, the better!  Crunchy foods like apples and celery also contain malic acid, which promote the production of saliva. That’s great for getting rid of those pesky food particles that get left behind after eating. Crunchy fruits and vegetables are a natural abrasive, which help “scrub” your teeth of bacteria.

 

Water, Water Everywhere

This one is a no-brainer. Drinking water during and after meals helps wash away food particles and loose plaque. It’s also a natural way to produce saliva, which you now know is a great way to naturally rinse your mouth.

 

Bonus Points

What foods are the primary offenders for staining teeth? Our daily caffeine boosters are among the culprits. Coffee, particularly black coffee, can seriously stain your teeth. Even adding a little cream to your coffee can help counterbalance the stains left by this dark liquid. Tea. Try switching to green or white tea if you are a serious tea drinker. Soda pop. There are really no redeeming values in soda. Between the sugar, acid, and dark staining colors, the best thing is to avoid soda completely. Red wine is another offender. Make sure to brush your teeth thoroughly before drinking red wine to help lessen the amount of color that can adhere to plaque.

E-Cigarette Effects

Why Vaping is Harmful for Your Oral Health

Vaping has been a huge trend for many that want to quit smoking.  In the last four years, the e-cigarette industry has more than doubled in sales, from $1.5 billion in 2014 to $3.5 billion in 2018.  Many see it as a safe alternative to smoking cigarettes, when in fact it poses many risks most people are not aware of.  They think because it is vaper the risks are very limited.  In fact, in the limited research that has been done in this new industry, many risks, especially to your oral health, have been found.  Here are 5 reasons why vaping is bad for your oral health.

 

Propylene Glycol Increases Tooth Decay

Propylene Glycol (PG) is the major ingredient used in most e-liquids. It includes acetic acid, lactic acid, glycerin & propionaldehyde; all are toxic to enamel & the soft tissue in the mouth.  PG can also lead to dry mouth which increases tooth decay and gum disease & decreases enamel hardness by 27%!

 

More Nicotine than You May Think

While you may think you are consuming less Nicotine vaping vs. smoking, one vaping session is the equivalent of 200 to 400 puffs – equal to 2 to 3 packs of cigarettes!

 

E-Cigarette Use Can Inflame Gums

One 2016 study found using e-cigarettes triggers an inflammatory response in gum tissues.  This affects blood flow to gums which may increase gum disease and tooth loss.

 

Increased Exposure to Bacteria

2018 study found that teeth that exposed to e-cigarettes had more bacteria than those that hadn’t.    This difference could be seen in the pits and crevices of teeth.  Excess bacteria can cause tooth decay, cavities, and gum diseases.

 

Damage to Cell Growth and Restoration

According to a 2018 review, studies of live cells from human gums suggest vaping aerosols can increase DNA damage. This can cause cells to lose their ability to divide and grow, speeding up cell aging and resulting in cell death.

As you can see vaping can gravely affect your overall oral health. With that said, vaping does appear to pose fewer oral health risks than smoking cigarettes.  Although research studies are ongoing, there’s still a lot about its long-term effects we don’t know, and the best thing to do for your health is to quit altogether.

However, we know quitting is much easier said than done! Have you had success quitting smoking?  We’d love to hear your story in the comments below!

4 Things to Remember for Your Oral Health During the Holiday Season

It’s the most sugarful time of the year! With Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas, the last 10 weeks of the year are some of the sweetest as far as sugar is concerned! There will be a lot of opportunity to eat tasty treats in the next few weeks, and we want to make sure you are prepared! Remember these tips to maximize your oral health as you celebrate the holidays.

 

Brush and Floss Your Teeth Twice Daily (And Correctly!)

As important as we know brushing twice per day, according to the American Dental Association, only 46% of Americans are doing it – and the percent for flossing is even worse. Brushing helps eliminate those sugary foods we will be eating this Christmas, as well as reduce acid that cause teeth erosion. How you brush is just as important. Be sure to choose toothpaste that contains fluoride and a toothbrush with soft bristles to avoid gum irritation. Brush your teeth softly with short strokes for at least two minutes, and avoid brushing too soft or too hard. And don’t forget to floss! Flossing helps get rid of plaque and food between your teeth brushing may miss.

 

Drink a Glass of Water with Your Christmas Feast

While the holiday beverages are typically hot chocolate and egg nog, both of these beverages are full of sugar and should be limited. Water is the best beverage for your oral and overall health. If you are not able to eliminate these tasty holiday beverages, it would help to include a glass of water. This can help eliminate some of the negative effects of sticky and acidic foods and beverages you will be eating during the holidays.

 

Eat Smarter, Not Sweeter

There are ways to satisfy your holiday sweet tooth besides diving into the Snickerdoodles. Eating natural sugars like fresh fruit not only contains more healthy fiber, but it’s the best choice for your teeth. And sometimes, all your body is craving is water. Sugar cravings can often be confused for thirst, so try to grab a glass a water before eating the candy cane!

 

Visit the Dentist Regularly

It’s almost December and you haven’t visited the dentist since last year? It’s not too late to schedule a checkup for this year – and it’s important that you do. In fact, we recommend at least two visits to the dentist a year. It’s important to keep up with regular visits because we will not only give your teeth a proper teeth cleaning, we will evaluate the health of your gums, take x-rays, and check for cavities and other issues.
To request an appointment, click here or call 419-475-3494.

The Best and Worst Foods for Your Dental Health

It’s back to school time, which means lunch packing season has begun!  Your child’s oral health is extremely important, and to prevent cavities and maintain good oral health, your diet — what you eat and how often you eat — are important factors. The minute you eat certain foods, bacteria in the mouth convert sugars and carbohydrates from the foods you eat to acids.  Acids begin to attack the enamel on teeth, starting the decay process.

There are plenty of foods that can damage your teeth, but did you know that there are foods that actually promote good oral health? Although you’re already flossing and brushing regularly, incorporating the right foods into your diet can strengthen teeth and keep them in great shape. When feeding you and your family, consider these foods to consume and avoid when improving your oral health.

 

It’s a Party in Your Mouth With These Food Choices

The best food choices for the health of your mouth include cheeses, chicken or other meats, nuts, and milk. These foods are thought to protect tooth enamel by providing the calcium and phosphorus needed to redeposit tooth enamel after being removed by acids.  Dairy products are full of calcium and other minerals that promote oral wellness, but it’s important to eat the right dairy products. When choosing milk, always skip conventional products that are full of hormones, antibiotics, and other chemicals.

Other food choices include crunchy fruits such as apples and pears.  Because apples are high in water, eating them stimulates saliva production, which helps rid your mouth of bacteria and stray food particles. The fiber found in apples also stimulates the gums and acts as a mild astringent for your teeth, gently brightening them.  If you want to consume acidic foods, such as citrus fruits and tomatoes, it will not cause harm as long as they are eaten as part of a larger meal to minimize their acid.

Because they’re high in vitamins and minerals while being low in calories, leafy greens—like kale, spinach, Swiss chard and collard greens—are a fool-proof way to keep teeth healthy. The antioxidants and vitamins found in these powerful veggies combat cavities while also serving as a sneaky source of calcium to keep teeth strong.

 

Limit Yourself When Consuming These for Strong Oral Health

Poor food choices include candy — such as lollipops, hard candies, and mints — cookies, cakes, pies, breads, muffins, potato chips, pretzels, french fries, bananas, raisins, and other dried fruits. These foods contain large amounts of sugar and/or can stick to teeth, providing a fuel source for bacteria. In addition, cough drops should be used only when necessary as they, like sugary candy, contribute to tooth decay.

Limit your consumption of sugar-containing drinks, including soft drinks, lemonade, and coffee or tea with added sugar. Also, avoid day-long sipping of sugar-containing drinks — day-long sipping exposes your teeth to constant sugar and, in turn, constant decay-causing acids.