Strong and healthy teeth make orthodontic work much easier for both the patient and the orthodontist. When teeth are in good condition, it creates a better environment for the orthodontist to move and adjust them into position. Brushing, flossing, and taking care of your teeth are all extremely important habits to keep up on for healthy smiles, but what you eat can actually help strengthen and improve the health of your gums and teeth from the inside.
Sticky and sugary treats are not only bad for your tooth enamel, but they also negatively affect the rest of your body. Your gums and teeth can be an indicator of your overall health so it is important to consider what you put in your mouth and how it will serve your body.
On the other end of the spectrum, adding healthy foods like fruits, vegetables, and good fats can improve the health of your whole body, including your mouth and everything inside it. Milk and other dairy products are notorious for claiming to “build strong teeth and bones.” But recent research has shown us that those are not the best choices for our health, especially the teeth. Milk contains sugar that can cause damage to the teeth when the acidity breaks down the enamel. Milk and dairy products get their good image in the world of bones and teeth because of their calcium and Vitamin D levels. In reality, there are tons of plant based foods that offer both calcium and Vitamin D and do not irritate the body in ways that dairy does.
Here are some foods that can help brighten your smile:
Greens such as spinach and kale both contain a high level of calcium. It is also a misconception that spinach contains a high level of acidity that is harmful to your teeth. Leafy greens have a small amount of calories and contain beneficial fiber so they keep you full longer and help add to the overall health of your body. Put them on a sandwich, make a salad, or whip up an omelette with cruciferous vegetables and your whole body will thank you.
In contrast to coffee, this beverage can actually provide you with some caffeine and also help out your pearly whites. Black and green tea contain polyphenols which slow the growth of bacteria in the mouth. Drinking tea can also help reduce plaque buildup, therefore reducing the risk of cavities. Brew a cup at home, at work, or try iced tea when out at a restaraunt. The benefits of tea go far beyond just the health of teeth, it is a great way to stay hydrated and to provide your body with vitamins and minerals that it craves.
It could be true what they say, an apple a day keeps the doctor away. That doctor may be the dentist. Although apples are acidic, they can actually stimulate the mouth to produce saliva which helps wash away harmful bacteria. The motion of chewing actually tells your mouth to start flushing away what is inside, so any time you crunch down on natural foods, you are helping to rinse out your mouth. If you have braces or other dental work that prevents you from biting directly into an apple, take precaution and cut the apple up into bite size pieces. Your mouth will experience the exact same results and thank you for not damaging any brackets, crowns, or pieces working hard for your teeth.
But only the sugar free stuff! Not only can this make your breath smell better, sugar free mint gum can help break up leftover food particles that are stuck in between teeth from your last meal. It also boosts production of saliva and can help protect your mouth from other sugary treats. After a big meal, pop in a piece of gum to do your teeth, gums, and overall health a boost.
Your teeth should be with you for your entire life. At Melbourne Orthodontics we want to make sure that your smile shines as bright as possible. We care about your general health and the correlation that it has with your oral health and hygiene. Healthy teeth do so much better when it comes to orthodontic work. Do your teeth a favor and eat foods that promote the health of your mouth and your entire body.