Find out if sugar could be the sneaky culprit that’s leading to your dental problems.
Hearing that you have cavities is never ideal. If you brush and floss regularly you may be scratching your head trying to figure out what could be causing your decay. Our Milwaukee, WI, dentist Dr. Paul Scholl reveals that your sweet tooth could become a decayed tooth if you aren’t careful.
While biting into that chocolate bar during that 2 pm lull or chowing down on a cold ice cream on a hot summer day may pump out all those happy brain feelings, it could be doing some less-than-great things for your teeth. Even if you can’t see it, our mouths have a lot of bacteria. While some of these bacteria are necessary for a healthy smile, there are also bad bacteria lurking.
These bad bacteria are just the kind to absorb and thrive off the sugar you are giving it. Every time bad bacteria takes in sugar it converts it into acid. As you may be able to guess, even strong, durable enamel is no match for this destructive acid. With every bite of sugar, another acid attack tries to break down the enamel fortress. The more sugar you consume, the more likely you are to deal with cavities or holes in your enamel over time.
Is there a way to stop these acid attacks?
While bacteria will continue to absorb sugar and churn it into acid, there is some good news on the horizon; these effects can be prevented. Of course, one of the best ways to prevent decay or further damage to enamel is to limit your sugar intake. If you are someone who helplessly runs to the candy machine or noshes on sugar throughout the day, then your mouth will never get the opportunity to repair the damage.
You may be surprised to hear that saliva has a role in helping protect enamel. Saliva contains vital minerals like phosphate, which are great for remineralizing and restrengthening damaged enamel. So, how can you stimulate saliva? Our Milwaukee general dentist recommends that when the urge to eat sugar hits, pop a piece of sugar-free gum in your mouth. This will hopefully nix the sudden craving while also increasing saliva.
Another option is to always use fluoride toothpaste when you brush your teeth. Fluoride is great for protecting your teeth against decay and can even reverse damage during the earliest stages. Brushing with fluoride toothpaste twice a day can go a long way if you are careful about what you are eating.
While avoiding sugar altogether is virtually impossible, it’s a good idea to come in every six months for routine cleanings to ensure that your teeth are as healthy as possible. During these visits, we can provide your teeth and gums with the proper and thorough cleaning they need to avoid decay and gum disease in the future. Call the Art of Dentistry in Milwaukee, WI, today.