Tooth enamel is the hardest tissue in the body, but that doesn’t mean it’s unbreakable. Different variables can cause enamel to erode and wear away, or even chip and break. Sadly, if this happens, the situation isn’t like a broken bone; when your tooth breaks, the body won’t repair it.
Enamel is a tough translucent crown that is meant to protect your teeth. It’s a barrier that blocks extreme temperatures, harmful chemicals, and the wear and tear of daily use – grinding, chewing, and biting. To keep your teeth in top shape, try to avoid a few foods, drinks, and habits.
Keep Your Teeth Clean
If you’ve been to the orthodontist office and have braces, invisible aligners, or some kind of retention treatment, you know you have to work a little harder to keep your teeth clean, and were likely asked to avoid certain foods like gum and hard candy. The same concept holds true if you want to maintain healthy enamel, with or without braces or Invisalign. The best way to protect your teeth and gums is to brush and floss at least twice daily and try to choose healthy snacks that are not loaded with sugar or starch.
What To Avoid
If you want to maintain healthy tooth enamel and protect your teeth, avoid the following (don’t worry, we know you can’t swear off all of these 100% of the time):
- Pop and other soft drinks
- Fruit drinks, citrus
- High starch foods
- High sugar foods
- Coffee (it is acidic)
- Sticky food like dried fruit
- Hard and crunchy food
- Certain medications like aspirin
- Chewing tobacco
There are also various biological factors that can affect the enamel of your teeth. These factors include:
- Low salivary flow
- Acid reflux, or repeated vomiting
- Gastrointestinal issues
- Inherited genetic issues
Lastly, daily environmental variables, such as friction and overuse can cause tooth enamel to weaken. Try not to brush teeth too hard or chew on finger-nails and foreign objects like pens or pencils. Also, never use your teeth to open packages and always use a soft bristled tooth brush.
Ask Dr. Tina Reed!
If you have question about braces or invisible aligners, or if you have more specific concerns, fill out our contact form and we’ll get back to you ASAP. Don’t forget to follow Dr. Tina Reed on Facebook and Instagram for more information about our Pittsburgh orthodontist office, and news on upcoming contests!