Many patients come in for their dental examination and are surprised to hear they require several fillings due to tooth decay. Sometimes that happens with parents who bring their children in for their first dental check-up. Often these patients or parents believe they have been on a healthy diet without much processed sugary drinks or foods. So what happened?
One case where a 9 year old boy was diagnosed with eight cavities, when asked about his diet and snacking habits, it was discovered he ate up to nine apples a day. Another case was a young man who made a large batch of healthy smoothie consisting of spinach, different fruits and some other vegetables. He took that to work and drank that instead of water all day. There were four cavities in his mouth.
The bottom line is that all carbohydrates can be metabolized by bacteria in our mouths and turned into acid. That subsequently can cause decay. So what are some healthy snacks that be consumed without fear of cavities?
Children’s teeth are more susceptible to decay due to the thin layer of enamel present so extra care must be taken. Any sweets should be consumed with a meal or within a short space of time. Best drinks are milk, water and unsweetened tea. Try to avoid snacking before going to sleep, and chewing sugar free gum will assist the pH of the mouth return to normal faster.