With the COVID-19 pandemic going on, the last thing you want to deal with is a sudden toothache or broken tooth. Although your dentist in Upper Arlington is still open to treating dental emergencies such as these, it’s much better for your oral health if you can avoid them altogether. One easy way to do that is to watch what you eat. Here are five foods you should avoid if you want to prevent a dental emergency.
1. Sour Candies
It probably comes as no surprise that candy is on this list. But sour candies in particular contain acids that are especially tough on your teeth. Because they’re chewy, they’re more likely to stick to your teeth for longer periods of time, increasing the chance that oral bacteria will feast on them and leave behind an acidic waste product that destroys your enamel, which is what causes cavities.
When you eat bread, all that starch breaks down into sugar in your mouth. It becomes a gummy-like paste that can get trapped in the crevices in and between your teeth, causing decay, gum disease, and serious bad breath. If you’re craving a sandwich, opt for whole-wheat bread. It contains less added sugars.
Although it’s not technically a food, ice can spell disaster for your pearly whites. Chewing on this hard substance can break your enamel and damage any restorations like crowns, bridges, or fillings. It’s fine to chill your beverages with ice, but resist the temptation to chew on it. Pop in a piece of sugar-free gum instead when you get the urge to chew.
4. Potato Chips
Like bread, potato chips are chock-full of starch, which turns into sugar and gets trapped in the nooks and crannies in your mouth. Since many of us don’t just eat one chip, the acid produced by bacteria in plaque lingers in the mouth, increasing the risk of cavities. After you’ve eaten a bag or plate of chips, make sure to floss to remove the extra particles from between your teeth.
5. Dried Fruits
You might assume that dried fruits are a perfectly healthy snack, but the truth is that they’re dangerous for your teeth. Most dried fruits are sticky, so they remain on your teeth for quite some time after you’ve finished eating. If you’re going to eat dried fruit, make sure to brush and floss right after you eat them. Better yet, eat the fresh version of the fruits instead. Chewing them can actually clean your teeth!
All of these foods can cause cavities that result in a toothache severe enough to become a dental emergency. Instead of these items, choose to eat calcium-rich foods like cheese and yogurt, and fresh produce. Sticking to a mouth-healthy diet can prevent the need to call your emergency dentist in Upper Arlington.
About the Author
Dr. Angela Courtney graduated from the Ohio State University College of Dentistry almost 25 years ago. She is also an alumnus of the prestigious Las Vegas Institute for Advanced Dental Studies. Her practice in Columbus, OH is currently closed for all non-emergency patients. If you find yourself with a dental emergency caused by something you ate, give Dr. Courtney’s office a call at (614) 451-7393.