MacDonald Ranch Dentist

Are Acidic Foods As Bad As Sugar?

We all know how bad sugar can be for our teeth, especially when our oral hygiene habits lack. Putting those two together can be a cocktail for disaster—acidic foods can also be damaging to your teeth, but in a different way. Adhere to these dental tips regarding acidic foods, and you’ll be protecting your teeth from unnecessary harm.

Nutrition vs. Acidity

The most acidic foods are some of the best (coffee, wine, etc.), but it also comes naturally in fruits and some vegetables. Tomatoes have high acidity, the brine surrounding pickles have high acidity, cranberries—it seems like nothing is safe, but there are some high-acid foods that are necessary, and here’s why:

Your Health Matters Most

Though some of the most acidic foods, being oranges, lemons, grapefruits and limes are all hard on your teeth, they give us something that we need to consume daily, something that our bodies don’t create on their own—vitamin C. These, among other acidic foods, are best consumed with water. Cutting your orange juice with water, squeezing lemons and limes into room temperature water, and having water by your side when you eat foods like spaghetti sauce and pizza, can help protect your enamel from harm.

How to Avoid Further Harm

If you enjoy acidic foods, consume water alongside them, and avoid one simple mistake: rushing to immediately brush your teeth. You should always wait thirty minutes before brushing if you’ve consumed acidic foods. They weaken your enamel, but there’s good news—your tooth enamel is tough, and bounces back in a short amount of time. Brushing too soon after eating acidic foods will put too much pressure on your teeth, and cause erosion. However, in lieu of immediately brushing, you can take these three dental tips to the dinner table with you.

  •         Brush your teeth shortly before consuming acidic foods. Your mouth has a balance of good and bad bacteria shortly after brushing, which will help your saliva absorb and digest acidity before it harms your teeth.
  •         Chew dental gum shortly after the meal to absorb any additional acidity left on your teeth.
  •         Consume room temperature water after ingesting acidic food. Take one large sip, swish it around your mouth gently, and swallow—you’ll wash away most of the acidity, ensuring that when you do brush your teeth, you’ll be a lot less likely to damage your enamel.

Follow these dental tips to continue enjoying your favorite foods while keeping your smile clean and sturdy, and don’t forget to schedule your twice-yearly cleanings. Even with proper habits, brushing, and flossing, slow buildup occurs in places that only your Henderson, NV dentist can reach.


© Joshua M. Ignatowicz, DMD. All rights reserved.
1070 W Horizon Ridge Parkway #121 Henderson, NV 89012

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