The enamel on your teeth acts as a natural layer of protection from damage and decay. Bacteria and other substances can weaken this enamel, leaving the tooth beneath susceptible to harm. When you have cavities, your tooth enamel has worn off in a particular spot. When making eating choices for oral health, you should prioritize foods that help you lower the number of damaging substances in your mouth. The following kinds of foods can reduce enamel erosion and therefore cavities:

Chewy, high-fiber foods. If you’ve ever eaten an apple, you might have noticed how clean your teeth feel afterward. When you eat something high in fiber that requires chewing, the food physically removes debris as it contacts your teeth. The chewing itself encourages your mouth to make more saliva, which naturally cleans your mouth. Besides apples, you can also try spinach or nuts.

Cheese and other dairy products. Most people associate the benefits of milk with healthy teeth, but don’t count out other dairy products like cheese and yogurt. Calcium and casein, two nutrients found in dairy products, keep enamel strong. Cheese tends to have more casein than other kinds of dairy, but you can take advantage of these nutrients when eating other foods like yogurt.

Sugar-free gum. Chewing gum maintains your teeth in many of the same ways that fibrous foods do. It helps you create more saliva to enhance your mouth’s natural self-cleaning process. We suggest sugarless gum because sugar can cause tooth decay, but you might want to opt for less acidic flavors like mint. Studies indicate that certain additives will harm your enamel, especially when combined with the sweetener xylitol. But, xylitol on its own actually prevents tooth decay.

As a general rule of thumb, drinking plenty of water after a meal can reduce food’s impact on your enamel. It removes some of the excess sugars, bacteria and acid left on your teeth after you eat.

Eating a healthy diet along with proper dental care and regularly scheduled dental cleanings can help protect the enamel on your teeth.  We hope that your will let Dr. Ben Johnson and our staff at Johnson Family Dental in Paducah play a role in the long-term dental health of your family.  If you have questions or would like to schedule an appointment, please contact us by calling (270) 554-2432 or CLICK HERE to contact us.  Our office is conveniently located at 2913 Lone Oak Rd in Paducah, KY.