When you get hungry during a long work day, it may be tempting to head to your office vending machine. Chips, candy bars, and cookies may all sound tempting, but they are bad news for your health. This is especially true in your mouth, but fortunately, other options are available.
Vegetables – especially crunchy options like celery and carrot sticks – are a great way to fill your stomach while protecting your teeth.
Introducing Nature's Toothbrush
Crunchy vegetables act as nature's toothbrush, scrubbing your teeth to rid them of plaque and bacteria. These vegetables are abrasive, which help to keep the teeth clean between brushing. Crunchy vegetables will help to remove food particles and stain-producing bacteria.
Plaque is a colorless, sticky substance that accumulates on the teeth. It consists of bacteria that feed on sugars, so by eating sweet foods and carbohydrates throughout the day, you'll actually feed these bacteria. As the bacteria eat, they will produce acid, which erodes the enamel and causes gum inflammation. By eating vegetables that don't contain these high levels of sugars, you won't give existing bacteria any ammunition to grow and multiply.
Crunchy Vegetables Stimulate Saliva Production
To maintain a healthy mouth, you also need a healthy amount of saliva. The saliva helps to keep your mouth at an ideal pH level. It also washes away food particles, plaque, and bacteria to keep your teeth healthy and clean. Dry mouth is a major cause of tooth decay but adding crunchy vegetables to your diet can help to keep your oral cavity healthy and well-lubricated.
Vegetables are packed full of important vitamins and minerals needed to maintain a healthy mouth and body. Consider cutting up some vegetables to pack for your daily snacks, and if you have additional questions about how to keep your teeth healthy throughout the day, call our office to set up an appointment.