Summer is an excellent time for frozen snacks such as popsicles and ice cream. They may be tasty, but these treats are usually not good for your dental health. Parkcrest Dental Group explains how an ice cream habit may affect your teeth.
What are the effects of ice cream on my teeth?
Ice cream contains large amounts of sugar that can cause dental problems like tooth decay, cavities, and gum disease. Foods that contain high amounts of sugar create acids that can break down the enamel of your teeth. This is why it’s so important to manage your sugar intake, brush twice a day, and see a dentist every six months. While tooth decay is easily treatable, it’s easier to prevent it from happening.
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How do I prevent tooth decay?
Preventing tooth decay is quite simple if you’re regularly brushing your teeth. Whenever you’re finished with your ice cream or other sugary treats, wait about thirty minutes and then brush your teeth to remove any remaining sugars. You don’t want to brush right away since your enamel will be weakened from the first contact of sugar. If you don’t have a toothbrush handy, rinsing with water or mouthwash will help remove the sugars still on your teeth.
Another tip is to limit the toppings on your ice cream. Toppings like caramel, chocolate syrup, and gummy bears add extra sugars to your ice cream dessert. Chewy or gummy toppings can get stuck in your teeth and make the sugar exposure worse. If you really love your ice cream toppings, select low-sugar options that are not chewy or gummy. Ice cream is already filled with sugar, and adding more can increase your risk of cavities.
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Should I avoid ice cream completely?
While ice cream is sugary, it’s also can be a source of calcium. Calcium is known to strengthen your bones and teeth. You shouldn’t be eating ice cream for every meal, but limited consumption, on occasion, is okay when you’re craving the popular summer treat.
Who can help me prevent cavities?
If your ice cream habit has gotten the best of you and you’ve identified signs of tooth decay or cavities, Parkcrest Dental can help. Visit our office in Springfield, MO, or call us at 417-887-1220. Don’t forget to fill out a new patient form if it’s your first visit.