Dentist - Rancho Cucamonga
9080 Milliken Ave, Suite 100
Rancho Cucamonga, CA 91730

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By John Stockdale, DDS
July 08, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: Sugar  

Mom may have been exaggerating when she told you not to eat sweets because they would rot your teeth right out of your mouth – but she wasn’t entirely wrong.Sugar

John Stockdale, DDS, your Rancho Cucamonga, CA dentist, can give you a much better explanation for why you should keep your hand out of the cookie jar!

Most people know plaque build-up on your teeth can cause oral health problems, including cavities and tooth decay, tartar, and gum disease. Not as many people know what causes plaque buildup.

When you eat, foods break down into simple sugars: fructose, maltose, lactose, and glucose, which make bacteria more acidic. When you eat foods known as fermentable carbohydrates -- cookies, cakes, potato chips, for example -- that breakdown process begins in your mouth, rather than farther down the digestive tract. That acidic bacteria is trapped in plaque, an invisible sticky substance that forms in your mouth. That plaque sticks to tooth enamel and gums and can cause tooth decay and gum disease.

Studies have shown that people who eat between meals -- especially high-carbohydrate snack foods, sodas, even less obvious culprits such as bananas – tend to have higher incidences of tooth decay. That’s because they are essentially fueling that acidic breakdown/bacterial process almost constantly.

But don’t despair! You can eat your sweets – just eat them with regular meals rather than as between-meal snacks. Not only can some foods act as natural cleaners and barriers to “plaque attacks” by increasing saliva flow and neutralize acids, but the regular intervals between meals prevents that bacterial breakdown from constantly occurring.

You can also eat between meal snacks, provided you limit the number and be careful what you eat. For example, instead of potato chips, candies, or pastries, try fresh fruit or veggies – but take it a step farther. Firm fruits such as apples and pears are going to produce less acid than, say, bananas or citrus fruits. Both of these are extremely high in fructose -- because they have enough water to offset the natural sugars. They stimulate saliva flow, which helps protect against bacteria. Vegetables, especially raw vegetables, do not contain enough carbs to produce a dangerous level of acids.

Contact Your Rancho Cucamonga, CA Dentist

For more information about how to maintain a healthy mouth, contact John Stockdale, DDS, in Rancho Cucamonga at 909-987-0040.

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