We all love junk food, carbonated drinks and meat on a stick, but these favorite summer foods can also increase our risk of developing cavities and gum disease. As your family dentistry in Oklahoma City, our team at 23rd Street Dental is here to provide a few tips on how to keep your smile looking its best this summer season.
Are Chips Really That Bad?
Many of us have a serious love for potato chips. There’s a reason why they can be found at just about every beach cook out and backyard BBQ. However, despite our love of salty goodness, chips may cause more damage to the health of your teeth and gums then you realize. Not only do chips tend to be high in fat and cholesterol, but the tiny chewed up particles created when eating them get stuck in the smallest parts of your mouth. When allowed to rest between your teeth and under the gums, the carbohydrates found in chips can can feed harmful bacteria that contributes to the development of tooth decay and gum disease.
So instead of grabbing a handful at your next backyard party, try satisfying your craving for crunch with fruits and veggies. Raw foods like carrots, pears, broccoli and celery can act like nature’s toothbrush, scrubbing away food particles from in-between teeth and flushing them from the mouth thanks to a high water content.
Protein to the Rescue!
Staying away from your favorite summer time snack foods can be difficult, but cheese and other foods high in protein can help alleviate our natural cravings for many types of junky foods.
Serving cheese platters – along with fruit and veggie trays – at our summer time parties offers a great way to stay away from foods that are bad for our teeth and gums. Not only are cheeses, yogurt and milk great sources of protein, they are also high in calcium, which helps to strengthen tooth enamel. Recent studies have also found that dairy may actually reduce the risk of gum disease, so throw some cheese on your burger and toss it on the grill.
Watch Out for Toothpicks!
Toothpicks may make a great option for keeping our hors d’ oeuvres together, but they make a poor choice for picking our teeth. The wood edges on toothpicks can fray, allowing tiny splinters to pierce the gums. This opens cuts that allow bacteria to sneak in and cause problems.
You’re much better off keeping some floss available should you need to remove some corn between your teeth than using a toothpick to clean. You can also try to avoid getting things stuck in your teeth by using seedless fruit and hamburger buns. Fruits like blackberries, kiwi and seedless watermelon are great alternatives to use in a fruit salad.
At Our Family Dentistry in Oklahoma City, We’re Here to Help!
At our family dentistry in Oklahoma City, we understand that summer time fun can be hard on teeth. It can be difficult to make healthy choices when traveling or having a party, especially when busy and on the go with family and friends. That’s why we are here to help by providing the best dental care possible so our patients stay healthy and happy.
Enjoy your summer, and we’ll see you again at 23rd Street Dental.