Candy Is Bad For Your Teeth
You would be hard-pressed to find someone who doesn’t have a favorite candy they like to snack on. There are a host of different candies to choose from, so there’s sure to be one for everyone! We all like to indulge from time to time, and what better month than June? After all, June is National Candy Month!
While the thought of eating all the candy you want throughout June is enticing, it’s important to remember how bad too much candy is for your teeth. The sugar in candy collects and fuels bacteria growth in your mouth. It eventually produces harmful acids that eat away at the enamel of your teeth, leading to tooth decay. Cavities are often the result of excessive candy consumption. However, that does not mean you cannot participate in National Candy Month. You can enjoy this month, as long as you are smart about the candies you do eat and engage in good dental hygiene practices.
National Candy Month is a time where many young children rejoice, but their parents shudder at the thought of dental bills. While most candy is bad for your teeth, you can still celebrate. There are a handful of useful tips to keep your teeth healthy this National Candy Month. If you and your family need a dental cleaning, contact Cosmetic & Family Dentistry of Las Colinas today.
What is National Candy Month?
National Candy Month occurs every June. The National Confectioner’s Association, a group that states they are “a trade association that advances, protects, and promotes chocolate, candy, gum, and mints,” established this celebratory month. They started National Candy Month as a way to celebrate the impact candy has had on the lives of millions around the country for over 100 years. The month is a way to celebrate those who innovate, develop, and distribute candy around the world.
The National Confectioner’s Association highlights the impact the candy industry has had on national and local economies. To celebrate the men and women who make, sell, and love candy, they encourage everyone around the country to celebrate National Candy Month by recognizing the economic impact of the candy industry. However, they also encourage you to celebrate by trying new candies and sharing them with those you love.
Candy’s Impact on Your Teeth
We all know how good candy tastes. It’s become a staple in holidays like Halloween and Easter. While millions of children love candy, and countless adults indulge in them themselves, candy is harmful to your teeth.
Most candy is full of sugar, and this sugar creates conditions in your mouth that bacteria thrive in. While your mouth is full of bacteria that benefit your mouth, the sugar from candy causes harmful bacteria to appear. As more sugar enters your mouth, the more the bacteria can consume. In due time, that bacteria create acids that combine with your saliva to form plaque that begins to eat away at your tooth enamel. The enamel protects your teeth. While it is the hardest tissue in the body, the acid created by harmful bacteria breaks it down. With the enamel worn down, tooth decay begins.
The acid continues to eat away at your teeth, decaying it until it creates a hole in your tooth. This hole is known as a cavity. Cavities can worsen if they do not receive the necessary treatment. If left alone, it can develop into a root infection, which may require root canal therapy or result in the extraction of your tooth.
To simplify it, the more sugar you consume, the more you expose your teeth to decay-causing acids. However, that does not mean you can’t eat candy in National Candy Month.
How to Protect Your Teeth During National Candy Month
It’s good to remember that sugar is not entirely to blame for tooth decay. While their sugar content does offer a lot of carbohydrates for bacteria to consume, plenty of other foods do the same. Even natural sugars and acids from fruits can be harmful, so you should always be conscious of the foods you eat.
There are countless other ways you can keep your teeth healthy while still enjoying National Candy Month.
Avoid Certain Candy
People tend to lump all candy in one group, but not all candy is created equal. Some present more risks to your teeth than others. Certain candies stick to and between your teeth. The longer they are stuck, the more likely bacteria will feed on it and develop plaque. Some candies to avoid include:
- Gummies and chewy candy
- Hard candies
- Sour candies
- Super sweet candies
Even breath mints can be harmful since they remain in your mouth longer, just like lollipops, giving sugar more time to eat at your teeth.
However, soft chocolate is one of the best candies to eat because it doesn’t stick to your teeth. Dark chocolate has less sugar than milk chocolate, so it is a better option. Sugar-free gum can help prevent tooth decay. It promotes more saliva production, which flushes excess food particles from your teeth’s surface.
Brush and Floss
Brushing your teeth twice a day for two minutes and flossing your teeth daily are two of the best ways to protect your teeth. If you plan on eating candy, be prepared to thoroughly clean your teeth to remove any excess candy that may cause them harm. Brushing your teeth helps remove any plaque buildup that may have occurred while eating candy or other foods. Flossing helps you care for the areas between your teeth where bacteria tend to hide and thrive.
You don’t have to brush immediately after consuming candy, however. Your saliva is there to rinse out your mouth naturally. Allow it to begin the cleaning process then brush your teeth soon after.
Limit Your Sugar Intake
While June is National Candy Month, that does not mean you have to eat candy every day. It’s not possible to cut sugar from your diet completely, but you can limit your intake. Be more conscious of the meals you eat to eliminate unnecessary sugars. You can also limit how many pieces of candy you allow yourself to eat.
Visit Your Dentist for a Dental Cleaning
In addition to limiting your candy intake and practicing good oral hygiene, one of the greatest ways to protect your teeth in National Candy Month is by visiting your dentist for regular dental cleanings. These cleanings allow your dentist to recognize any issues or tooth decay before they become a bigger problem. Your dentist will remove any plaque buildup and treat any cavities you may have.
National Candy Month is an exciting time for many families. While we all have special memories with our favorite candies, we must remember the danger they present our teeth. The sugar in candy helps speed up tooth decay, so it’s vital to take steps to protect your teeth. Contact Cosmetic & Family Dentistry of Las Colinas today to schedule your family’s next dental visits.