Snacking may be the perfect way to keep your hunger at bay between meals, it may also be healthy for your body to engage in healthy snacking throughout the day. Snacking may also be a great way to maintain healthy energy levels. There are some important things to consider about snacking related to your oral health. Don't worry, eliminating snacking is not the answer, but there may be ways to ensure that you are taking the necessary precautions.
What to Pay Attention to
Just as the foods we eat for our meals can damage our teeth, so can the foods we snack on. The more snacking, the more potential there is for acids to develop cavities. Snacking tends to be mostly starchy or food filled with carbohydrates. Starchy foods are more likely than other types to leave sticky bits of food between the teeth. Candy, another common snack, is also one that can be dangerous to the teeth by leaving sticky residue or food pieces. Sugar is also a popular snack, but sugar is one of the worst things for the teeth. Sugar promotes tooth decay while increasing the amount of acid in the mouth.
While ignoring the desire to snack is not the appropriate solution, there are ways you can protect your teeth from the concerns related to snacking. If you have an acidic snack, it is important to not brush your teeth directly after because it could cause erosion. After an acidic snack your tooth enamel is already in a weakened state. It may be a good idea to eat less sugary and starchy snacks, and to purchase a toothpaste with cavity protection.
Keeping up with daily oral hygiene, including brushing and flossing, will help you maintain a healthy smile. Snacking is a component in almost everyone's life. Depending on the snacks chosen it can also be a very important part of your diet and overall health. If you have more questions about how to maintain your dental health while snacking please call our office and we will be happy to help.
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