We hope you have had a fantastic Easter safely locked away in your family bubble. There’s been much joking on Social media about boredom eating as we lose our daily routines during lock down. But do you know what snacking can do for your teeth?
CONSTANT SNACKING RISKS
Every time you eat or drink anything, besides plain water, your mouth becomes acidic. In a healthy mouth it takes 2 hours for your saliva to neutralize that acid and let your mouth to return to a safe ph. During this time your teeth are being attacked by this sugar and acid and this leads to tooth decay.
The longer you have between eating or drinking anything, the less risk there is for tooth decay. So every time you open the fridge or pantry ask yourself, “Do I need this, or am I bored?” Both your teeth and your waistline may well thank you.
WHAT WE DRINK
Personally, I love my cups of tea. And we need to remember its not just what we eat, but also what we drink that can cause damage to our teeth. Keeping it simple, plain water is the only safe drink for our teeth. Switch to Water is a great campaign by the NZ Dental Association supporting this. Check it out at https://www.nzda.org.nz/public...
Kiwis are great at finding new habits that can be good for us. We also have a mindset that if this is good, I’ll do it twice as much and have twice the results. This is not often the case. I’ll discuss this from the perspective of drinks that may be recommended for good health.
People believe drinking fizzy water is good for their health. It’s not a soft drink, there’s no sugar, it hydrates you and it replaces an alcoholic drink in some cases. But when you carbonate water it becomes acidic. Acid dissolves away your teeth. So please, if you like fizzy water, only drink it at mealtimes. Do not drink fizzy water all day, it will dissolve away your teeth.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple Cider vinegar is often recommended by some people for health benefits. Apple cider vinegar is also very acidic. So only have this before a meal and do not drink it all day.
A glass of lemon water 20-30 minutes before a meal is said to help aid digestion. People also add lemon to their water for flavour. But remember lemon, or any citrus, contains citric acid. This acid is very successful in dissolving tooth enamel. So, if you want to drink lemon water, drink it all in one go, preferably before, or with, a meal and do not sip on it all day.
Tea and Coffee
We all have our vices and coffee is loved by many. You may also find that now you are at home you are having more hot drinks than normal.
Both coffee and tea are diuretics. This means they don’t hydrate you, they dehydrate you. Hydration is important for maintaining good saliva flow. Your saliva is what buffers acid and washes away debris from your teeth.
For every coffee you have you must have 2 glasses of water to combat the dehydration. So think about how many coffees you have, how many glasses of water a day would you need to stay neutral?
These are better for hydration and some, like Green Tea, contain good antioxidants. Green Tea is also beneficial for healthy bacteria in your mouth. But think about fruit teas, these also have the risk of being acidic.
So no matter what you eat or drink, think about frequency(how often) and acid attack.
Have you had at least 2 hours between snacks and drinks? Having a good drink of water after a snack helps flush away food and dilutes the acid.
How much plain water are you drinking? Are you well hydrated to produce healthy saliva?
Do not brush straight after eating or having an acidic drink. This just brushes the acid into your teeth. Wait at least 30 minutes after a snack before you brush your teeth.
We hope this helps. If you have any questions send us a message through the website or contact us on Facebook at Piopio Dental