Having a snack throughout the day has become a habit within our society. Many people even have a morning and afternoon snack. The problem with midday snacking is that it is increasing the prevalence of tooth decay and cavities in our patients, and your Concord, NH dentist explains why.
The Types of Snacks You Consume May not be Healthy
Most people tend to reach for snacks such as crackers, bagels, bread, or chips, which are all carbohydrates. While you may think this is a better choice than sweets, carbohydrates present a double problem for your teeth. 1) They convert into sugar during the digestion process. 2) They are starchy and tend to stick to your teeth for longer periods, which results in breakdown of tooth enamel and tooth decay.
You May Not Have a Beverage With Your Snack
When you eat a meal, you will typically drink water or some other sort of beverage that helps accelerate the digestion process and wash away excess food debris in your mouth. You may not drink a beverage with your snack, which causes food debris to linger in your mouth. Worse yet, you may choose to combine your snack with a sugary drink such as soda or juice, which is a double whammy for your teeth.
How Can I Protect my Teeth?
Limiting your snack consumption during the day and drinking a lot of water are the best options for your oral health. If you do need that pick-me-up during the day, keep healthy snacks on hand such as raw carrots, apples, or nuts. Fruits and vegetables actually help to neutralize the acids in your mouth that contribute to tooth decay, and they increase saliva flow to help minimize the food debris that is left in your mouth.
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