Could You Be Ruining Your Teeth With These 5 Bad Habits?
If you want great teeth, here are the 5 worst habits that you need to stop ASAP.
Every day, we do things that can damage our teeth. So, we asked dental expert Hadie Rifai, DDS, to advise us.
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What should we avoid? What day-to-day habits do we need to change to protect our teeth throughout the day?
Not surprisingly, there are foods and drinks that pose some of the biggest threats to your teeth — and it’s not just desserts, candy and soda.
Foods and drinks that are high in starch or refined carbohydrates, such as pasta, white rice and refined cereals, can also cause plaque buildup that can lead to cavities.
“You also want to avoid regularly eating acidic foods or drinks such as sodas, citric fruit or fruit juice,” says Dr. Rifai. “Citric foods can demineralize teeth, making them more susceptible to developing decay over time.”
He says coffee and tea can cause staining, and if you add sugar and cream, they become more prone to causing cavities.
“While brushing after meals is the ideal, a good rule of thumb is to follow up any of these foods or beverages by drinking plain water,” he says.
Dr. Rifai cautions that you should not do the following because it can seriously damage your teeth and gums:
Dr. Rifai offers a few more suggestions for maintaining dental and oral health, as well as a healthy smile. He always recommends a nutritious, balanced diet.
Even things that can harm your teeth are fine to eat in moderation, he says. However, they should be followed up with water and good oral hygiene.
Second, develop a good relationship with a dentist and hygienist you trust, and see them routinely. Don’t neglect your teeth because of finances, or lack of time or resources.
“It is always easier to be proactive rather than reactive,” Dr. Rifai says. “A dental emergency can be painful, stressful and expensive.”