3 Common Enemies to a Healthy Mouth

Recently, we started sharing some tips in a series of nutritional and lifestyle changes you can make to help promote healthier gums and teeth. We started off by sharing 4 Foods for Healthier Gums.

And, since we provide general dentistry in Midtown Manhattan, with advanced, patient-friendly techniques, our goal is to make sure that everyone has a healthy mouth with healthy gums and teeth.

Along with a generally healthy diet, and daily, healthy dental care habits, the types of foods you eat can play a pretty important role in the overall health of your gums and teeth due to some of their specific qualities.

If you find yourself continuing to struggle with keeping your mouth in tip-top shape, despite improved brushing and flossing habits, perhaps it?s time to look at the types of foods you?re eating.

(Psst: reducing your intake of some of these foods could also help you manage your weight, energy levels, and more!)

We've put together a list of 3 common enemies to a healthy mouth that can help you keep up the fight for happier teeth and gums.

1. Sugary Foods

Most of us have heard about sugary foods causing cavities. That's because sugary foods - like candy, cookies, and other desserts - stick to the surface of our teeth and, unless quickly brushed away, hang around for a while. When they do, the sugar left behind serves as fuel for bacteria, which ultimately leads to tooth decay and bacterial growth along the gum line. It?s important to make sure that, if you eat a lot of sugary foods, to brush as soon as possible after eating them, and, as always, don?t forget to floss and rinse. And, for the best results, try replacing those sugary sweets with natural foods instead, such as fruit!

2. Starchy Foods

Believe it or not, some starchy foods such as potato chips, crackers, and bread, can be just as damaging to your teeth as candy. That?s because these foods are made of simple carbohydrates which, when they break down, actually turn into sugar and have the same effect as sugary foods: they stick to your teeth and provide a source of fuel for bacteria if not dealt with quickly and efficiently. Try replacing some of those starchy snack foods with healthier options, instead, such as nuts, fruit, and especially veggies!

3. Acidic Foods

One of the worst enemies for your oral health are foods high in acidic content. Sugary and starchy foods actually promote acid growth in your mouth, which is often where tooth decay comes from. But, foods and drinks high in acid content also wear away the enamel on your teeth.

Additionally, a lot of packaged foods and drinks, such as soda, fruit juices, teas, and coffees have sugar added, which presents a pretty bad combination of sugar, starch, and acid! While fruit juices are healthy for you in the form of vitamins and minerals, they also often contain a lot of acid and a lot of added sugar. Try and brush your teeth as soon as possible if you drink a lot of soda or packaged foods or drinks.

Better yet, try replacing those sodas and other drinks with more natural alternatives, especially water!

Ultimately, the key lies in balance. Our goal is to make your life a happier, healthier one. Most of these suggestions aren?t intended to rid you of foods and drinks that you love, but intended to be a guide to help you understand where you might consider making some alternate decisions... for your mouth and for your overall health.


If your gums are red, bleeding, or sore and just aren't getting any better, let us know. We'd be happy to see you and guide you on your gum disease treatment options.

Contact us and book a consultation today at our Midtown Manhattan, NY office.

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