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5 Worst Candies for Your Teeth

by John M. Khoury, Jr. DDS

Saturday, October 01, 2011

One good thing about Halloween candy? Parents usually encourage their kids to brush more often. A short candy binge is not as dangerous and poor daily eating habits. We don’t want to spoil your fun but some candies are worse than others. Be wary of the worst cavity-causers:

Taffy. The longer food sticks to your teeth he longer bacteria has to produce cavity-causing acid. Taffy can plaster your teeth and wedge itself into nooks and crannies.

Hard Candy. Hard candies don’t stick like taffy but they take a long time to dissolve. The longer candy sits in the mouth the more acidic the environment becomes.

Peanut Butter and Chocolate Treats. Chocolate creates acid build up and the stickiness of peanut butter doesn't help the situation.

Chocolate Covered Candy. Small pieces usually come in bags which means you are continually chewing on candy which gives bacteria plenty of time to generate cavity causing acid.

Sugar Licks. Sugar sticks can actually be poured on the tongue, avoiding chewing and teeth altogether. When quickly consumed they can be out of the mouth before any major damage is done, but when you add the “licks”, licking and dipping hard candy into the sugar, watch out!

Sugar mixed with bacteria produces acid in your mouth that attacks tooth enamel for up to twenty minutes. When a tooth decays, the enamel does not grow back. The only option once decay occurs is to have the tooth treated by a dentist. Use the tips below for a healthy smile:

  • Chew fresh fruits (especially apples!) to stimulate saliva flow. This decreases mouth acidity and washes away food particles.
  • Crunch on fresh vegetables such as celery and carrots to stimulate your gums.
  • Aged cheese at the end of a meal helps prevent cavities.
  • Sugarless gum increases saliva flow, decreases acid and flushes out food particles.
  • Eat plain yogurt, fresh nuts, chicken and other meats.
  • Drink tea, it is a good source of fluoride.
  • Consume water to your heart’s content.

Combine a healthy diet with regular brushing for best oral health results.

Enjoy!

For more information call (248) 969-SMILE or visit www.OxfordSmileCenter.com Dr. Khoury supports the local community with programs such as Halloween candy buy-back, Donated Dental Services, elementary educational visits and support of school athletic programs.