Tips From a Family Dentist for Avoiding Sugar and Keeping Your Teeth Healthy

Family DentistAs a local family dentist, we believe that if you eat a healthy diet at home and have your teeth cleaned twice a year, you can keep your teeth healthy and strong.  Part of eating healthy is cutting out foods that are bad for you. Sugar is one of them.  Sugar in any quantity is bad for your oral health because as it sits on your teeth and gums it can create acid that attacks your teeth.  This can lead to cavities and gum disease.There are several ways that you can learn to avoid sugar.  This isn’t easy and around the holidays it becomes even harder because sugary treats are everywhere.  We understand that it is difficult but through focused effort you can avoid sugar and eat foods that are healthy instead.  If you do give into an occasional craving, make sure to brush your teeth immediately afterwards.Here are tips from our family dentist office for living a sugar-free lifestyle.
  • Look at the ingredients.  If you purchase a lot of packaged or processed foods, you may be eating a lot of sugar without even knowing it.  Read the labels and switch to foods that aren’t full of sugar.  When possible, cook with fresh ingredients so that you get the maximum benefits of the nutrients without the sugar, salt, and other preservatives.
  • Change what you eat. Instead of eating boxed dinners, switch to ones that contain lean protein, fresh veggies, dairy products, and nuts.  These foods are healthy for your teeth and your body.  Improving your diet will help to remineralize your teeth so that they are stronger and are less likely to get cavities.
  • Drink more water.  If you drink a glass of water before eating dinner or going to a party, you will feel full and eat less.  This is important because if you eat dinner first, you may not have room for dessert and a trip to the cake table.  If you still feel cravings after dinner, drink another glass of water before looking at the sweets.  This simple step can naturally keep you from overindulging.
  • Reward yourself.  No one wants to feel deprived of anything.  If sugar is your weakness, create a plan to reward yourself for staying away from it.  If, for example, you really want to go on vacation, then make a plan that if you and the family stay away from sugary treats throughout the holidays, you can go on the trip in January.  After avoiding sugar for months, your cravings should go away and as an added benefit, you will look better for your upcoming trip.
  • Do something else.  Instead of trick-or-treating or going to a party, do another fun activity with the family.  For example, you could go bowling or to a movie.  This way you still have a good time but avoid events that are full of sugar.
As a family dentist, we know that if you follow these tips and learn to stay away from sugar, your teeth and your body will be healthier for years to come.

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