Cheese And Chewing Gum

How everyday foodstuffs can help you to have healthy teeth and gums.

Although professional dental care, such as that provided at the Cygnet Dental Practice, is essential if you wish to have healthy teeth and gums well into your old age;  a large part of preventative care falls to the patient.

Brushing and flossing on a daily basis is an essential part of this home care, but a number of everyday foods and drinks can also provide some additional help. In today’s blog, we take a look at a few of these.

Water

As a nation, we probably drink more water than generations before us. Whether this trend will continue with the drive to reduce the use of  plastic in water bottles remains to be seen. Staying well hydrated though, is a simple, yet excellent way to get your mouth off to a good, healthy start.

When we are dehydrated, our mouths become dry, and the number of bacteria in our mouth start to increase. Whilst there are ‘good’ bacteria present in our mouths, it is the ‘bad’ bacteria which should concern us. Gum disease especially, is more likely when these increase in number. Drinking water (and not sugary drinks), is a great way to help keep our oral bacteria at a healthy level by ensuring that our mouths remain moist.

Chewing gum

Providing that it is sugar free, chewing gum can be a useful tool in the arsenal to keep our teeth and gums healthy. Whilst it definitely should not replace brushing and flossing, chewing sugar free gum, especially after a meal, is a great way of removing bacteria and tiny pieces of food that can become trapped between our teeth, and on the gum line, when we eat. Keeping a few pieces of sugar free gum handy for those times when using a toothbrush or floss is either impractical or anti social is useful as a first step to keeping our mouths clean. The act of chewing also helps to improve saliva flow. This helps to keep the mouth moist; an important factor previously mentioned.

Cheese

Cheese sometimes gets a bad reputation as it is usually high in fat. It does contain many useful nutrients though and can also play a useful role in our daily oral health regimen. Having a cheese board to end a meal is quite traditional, and perhaps our ancestors knew a thing or two. Eating a small piece of cheese at the end of the meal helps to balance the acid levels in our mouths. As acids from food can cause enamel damage, this is a useful thing to do immediately at the end of a meal, especially if it is likely to be some time before you brush your teeth.

As mentioned at the start of our blog, these tips, and brushing and flossing, does not mean that you won’t need to see one of our Wickford dentists every six months or so. Even if you feel that your teeth are healthy, we still highly recommend that you do this. If you would like to make an appointment to see us, please call the Cygnet Dental Practice on 01268 733078.