Four Foods That Can Damage Your Teeth

Four Foods That Can Damage Your Teeth

Last month, we looked at foods and drinks that can stain your teeth, but whiteness isn’t the only measure of healthy teeth. There are lots of foods that can chip your teeth or damage dental work in your mouth when you eat them. What are some of these problem foods? Your Pocatello, ID dentist can warn you about some of the biggest culprits when it comes to chipped teeth, loose fillings, and broken crowns.

Ice

On a hot summer day, it’s great to fill a tall glass with ice and pour in some soda, lemonade, or tea to help cool down. You’re right if you assume that sugary drinks are bad for your teeth (they are!), but they’re bad in an over-the-long-term kind of way. In fact, lemonade and soda are also quite acidic, which isn’t good for your tooth enamel, either. However, it’s the ice that can actually chip your teeth if you chew it. Other hard foods can damage your teeth, too, so be careful when you’re eating things like baguettes, hard pretzels, and biscotti.

Popcorn

Lots of people enjoy buttered popcorn while sitting in a cool, air-conditioned movie theater, but unpopped kernels can definitely ruin the fun. They’re hard enough to chip a tooth if you crunch down on one of them by accident or on purpose. However, popcorn actually poses a double threat. The thin shell that covers the kernel can actually get stuck between your teeth or between your tooth and gum, giving bacteria a source of food and promoting tooth decay.

Fruits with pits

What do olives, cherries, dates, and peaches all have in common? They all have pits, of course, and those pits can damage teeth. If you accidentally bite into a pit, you can definitely crack or loosen a crown—or damage regular tooth enamel.

Candy

Pretty much every type of candy can damage your teeth. Hard candies can chip teeth if you bite on them or chew them up; if you suck on them and let them dissolve slowly, you’re basically giving your teeth (and the bacteria in your mouth) a sugar bath. Chewy candies, like caramels or taffy, can stick to your teeth, increasing the risk of cavities, or stick to fillings and crowns, loosening them. But sour candies are probably the most damaging of all because they combine three dangers to your teeth all in one. They’re loaded with sugar and they stick to your teeth, but the sour flavor actually comes from acids, which eat away at tooth enamel.

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What Do I Do About My Wisdom Teeth?

What Do I Do About My Wisdom Teeth?

“People grow through experience if they meet life honestly and courageously. This is how character is built.” – Quotation attributed to Eleanor Roosevelt’s wisdom teeth

If your wisdom teeth can offer insight like that, why would you ever have them removed? Most likely, you or someone you know has had them removed. It turns out there’s a solid reason.

In fact, wisdom teeth, which earned their name because they emerge at the onset of adulthood, aren’t all that wise. (Most people believe Eleanor Roosevelt came up with that statement on her own, but it’s no coincidence that it occurred after her wisdom teeth came in!)

Scientists believe that wisdom teeth helped our ancestors with a diet that was much harder on their teeth than our diet is to ours. However, they only begin to come in when people are around the age of 17 to 21 years of age. Since they emerge so late, after your other teeth are well-established, wisdom teeth often create unnecessary problems in your mouth.

If you keep your wisdom teeth, you might be able to eat beef jerky 10% faster, but the complications that can arise make them not worth the risk. (And if you eat enough beef jerky to think you might want to keep your wisdom teeth after all, you probably should speak to a nutritionist.)

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Tooth Sensitivity to Cold

Tooth Sensitivity to Cold

Ouch! Maybe it’s a fresh smoothie, a spoonful of ice cream, or even just a sip of ice water—but there it is, throbbing tooth pain.

There are many reasons why you might be experiencing tooth sensitivity to cold. Fortunately, you can take several steps to remedy this yourself, including checking with your dentist.

Other symptoms often accompany sensitivity to cold, including:

Sensitivity to hot foodsPain when biting or chewingPersistent dull or throbbing tooth pain

  But what conditions cause these kinds of tooth sensitivity?

Exposed Roots

Tooth enamel, the hardest substance in your body, covers your tooth above the gumline. However, the root of your tooth, the part normally covered by your gums, does not have this protective layer. If you don’t brush and floss regularly—or if you brush and floss too vigorously—your gums may recede, exposing the roots of one or more of your teeth. If you have exposed roots, the best course of action is to follow general oral hygiene. Continue brushing and flossing, but use a soft toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste specifically made for sensitive teeth. If the pain continues, though, make sure to see your dentist.

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Survive Allergy Season

Survive Allergy Season

Making the Best of Your Summer and Fall

For most parts of the country, summer and early fall are often filled with outdoor adventures. From enjoying the local water hole and hiking to classic barbecues and playing your favorite lawn game, the fun is endless. However, according to the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, for more than 23 million Americans, nature has created a buzzkill: ragweed. Ragweed may not be that person who signs up to bring only napkins and plastic cups to your barbecue, but the allergy symptoms of ragweed (hay fever) can make your eyeballs feel like an overfilled balloon. While the symptoms of hay fever can be merely uncomfortable and a nuisance, there are instances in which they can significantly hinder your daily life.

Hay fever includes the following symptoms:

Itchy eyes and throatNasal congestionSneezingRunny noseHivesCoughing

  If left untreated, symptoms can escalate to a sinus infection. Sinus infection symptoms can include facial pain, congestion, bad breath, coughing, and dental pain.

How to Fight Back

There are a few medicines, remedies, and practical tips you can use to help relieve symptoms and prevent hay fever altogether.

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Conquer Toothaches Once and For All

Conquer Toothaches Once and For All

There is nothing worse than feeling the pain of a toothache creep into your mouth. In honor of National Toothache Day (February 9th), let us delve into toothache symptoms, what it could mean, and some things you can do to help with pain, as well as prevent toothaches from happening.

Symptoms

Since a toothache is a common problem, it comes with a lot of symptoms too. Some of these include:

Throbbing painSharp painPain when pressure is appliedPain when exposed to hot or cold temperatures

If any of these symptoms last longer than 1-2 days, it’s time to see your dentist for further examination.

Causes

Unfortunately, it can be hard to pinpoint what’s causing your toothache since so many issues can cause them.

Tooth Decay and cavities are very common. When you eat foods, especially ones that have a lot of sugar, you’re feeding the bacteria in your mouth. As the bacteria eat, they produce acid, which damages tooth enamel. Typically, you won’t feel pain until the acid eats past your enamel and reaches the nerves underneath. If you are to the point where you feel pain, you will most likely need a filling, crown, or root canal (depending on the amount of damage).

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