Adolescence represents an important period for the development of one’s oral health. By the time children reach their teenage years, all baby teeth have been lost and replaced with permanent teeth. This means that for this age group, oral hygiene habits go a long way towards affecting the oral health of patients in adulthood. Educating adolescents about the importance of following a healthy diet and their implications on oral health can make a difference in having healthy smiles in adulthood.
So what makes a tooth-friendly diet? Here are some characteristics.
Fruits and Vegetables
Eating a sufficient amount of crunchy fruits and vegetables such as broccoli, carrots, celery, apples, and pears can help boost saliva production. Saliva can work to remove bad bacteria that produce dangerous acids that harm tooth enamel.
A tooth-friendly diet also avoids acidic foods, which can increase the risk of developing cavities and other dental conditions. Although oranges, tomatoes, grapefruit, lemons, and berries are regarded as healthy sources of nutrition, they can also wear away tooth enamel. To be fully protected against these risks, dentists recommended to brush after each meal or swish with mouthwash to remove excess acid from the mouth.
Milk, Yogurt, Cheese
Teeth benefit from having calcium and other minerals in terms of improved strength and durability. Children following a tooth-friendly diet often consume a recommended daily amount of calcium. These can be found from yogurt, cottage cheese, and regularly cheese. For those who have less tolerance to dairy products, calcium-fortified soy milk and orange juice provide acceptable options as well.
One of the essential elements of following a tooth-friendly diet is avoiding candies and treats containing an excessive amount of sugar. Children who have a sweet tooth opt for sugar-free substitute instead of regular candy. Chewing sugar-free gum or drinking sugar-free beverages provide better long-term benefits for teeth. They also do not wear away tooth enamel – providing a dentist-approved substitute.