There are some common misconceptions about sugar and cavities. Fortunately, Dr. Ben Johnson at Johnson Family Dental in Paducah is here to set the record straight. We want all of our patients to understand how cavities are formed, what part sugar plays in the formation of cavities, and how we can prevent tooth decay. Continue reading to learn the truth about sugar and cavities!

How Do Cavities Form?

In order for a cavity to form, two things must be present in your mouth: bacteria and sugar. Our mouths naturally house a number of different types of bacteria, some good and some bad. The bad bacteria feed on sugar and break it down into acid which causes tooth decay. Sugar is introduced through the foods we eat and the beverages we drink. Although brushing and flossing help remove bacteria from our teeth, if we aren’t eating foods low in sugar, we may not be able to prevent the majority of our cavities.

How Does Diet Cause Cavities?

What we eat and drink affects our dental health the most. The majority of patients already know that sugary foods can cause dental cavities. These may include foods and drinks like soda, candy, and desserts. Unfortunately, there are many healthy foods that can also cause cavities. If a food or drink can be broken down into a sugary substance then it can contribute to tooth decay. Foods you may not expect to cause cavities include grains, fruits, and dairy. When we enjoy these foods, the bacteria in our mouths break them down into acid which eventually eats away at the enamel on our teeth.

Does Snacking Cause Cavities?

Our Paducah, KY dentist wants to remind you that even though foods like fruits, grains, and dairy are healthy, they shouldn’t be eaten constantly throughout the day. In fact, snacking is another dietary habit that can lead to tooth decay. For example, if you constantly snack on fruits or drink many cups of coffee with milk throughout the day, you are continually exposing your teeth to sugar. Instead, avoid snacking, drink more water throughout the day, and eat foods low in sugar at set meals.

How Can I Prevent Cavities?

The three most important things you can do to prevent cavities include eating a healthy diet, brushing twice daily and flossing once daily, and seeing your family dentist every six months. A healthy diet consists of foods low in sugar, low in fat, and unprocessed. To practice eating a healthy diet, you should eat at set meal times and avoid snacking. Oral health is also extremely important to prevent cavities. At Johnson Family Dental, we recommend brushing at least twice per day, but it wouldn’t hurt to brush your teeth after you eat lunch as well. Finally, you should visit your Paducah dentist twice a year for a check up and teeth cleaning.

Schedule Your Next Teeth Cleaning with Johnson Family Dental!

If it has been more than six months since your last dental check-up, it’s definitely time for a cleaning. Give us a call at Johnson Family Dental to schedule your next appointment at (270) 554-2432. Johnson Family Dental is conveniently located at 2913 Lone Oak Rd in Paducah. Our normal office hours are Monday through Thursday from 8am to 5pm. We look forward to meeting all of your family’s dental needs!