Throughout history, the human diet has been going through a lot of changes. In medieval times, men hunted for the day’s meals. This meant that the food they ate was mostly coarse meat and some gatherings of vegetables and fruits. This coarse and fibrous diet is very different from the food we consume today.
We have all surely noticed the increase in soft and processed foodstuffs in today’s era. As a food blogger, I feel like the emphasis is always on taste and palatability – food has become softer, with the usage of more artificial ingredients, preservatives and the like. Unfortunately, these changes have led to more sugars and carbohydrates in our food, and less fiber and nutrients.
How does this affect dental health?
Soft, sticky foods tend to remain on your teeth longer – the longer these particles remain, the more your teeth are at risk of decay.
Sweet and sugary desserts are on the rise, which again directly leads to an increase in cavities and decayed teeth. The decreased level of fibers and course/rough substances in your diet reduces the “self-cleansing” ability of your teeth. Colgate mentions that fibrous foods, especially carrots are great for your gums and teeth because they help to get your saliva flowing.
In this age of eating out, you should know that fast-food chains and restaurants always serve food with processed sugars and other artificial ingredients to make their food uber-delicious and tempting. These ingredients affect our teeth as well as our health as a whole. As a dentist, I would say that dental health depends a lot on your oral habits. Brushing twice a day with a toothbrush and toothpaste containing fluoride is very important.
Along with brushing habits, you should floss before bed – flossing is an underrated yet important aspect of oral hygiene maintenance. Flossing helps with removing food particles and soft deposits between your teeth and prevents gum disease over time. Ultimately, your oral health is an integral part of your overall health. The two most common dental problems we face today are ‘caries’ or cavities, and gum disease.
Is binge eating calling for more cavities?
When people binge eat, what they don’t realize that it is the frequency of their meals which matters more than the quantity. This is because the more frequently you consume your food, the more will be the pH imbalance in your mouth.
Basically, you are at a lower risk of cavities if you eat chocolates along with your lunch as compared to when you eat chocolates in between lunch and dinner. So remember to reduce snacking in between your meals, as well as reduce the overall sweet consumption in your meals.
Do you ever wonder what causes gum diseases?
The most common problem with gums is the build-up of deposits like plaque and tartar along the margin of the gums. Plaque is a soft, white bacteria-filled substance while tartar is a hardened version of the same thing. When you don’t take care of this build-up, your gums tend to become inflamed and swollen. You may also see bleeding from the gums while brushing or eating. This is called ‘gingivitis’.
Verdict from dentist and food blogger: Toothpick or floss?
A lot of restaurants around your city probably still provide toothpicks at the end of your meal. The truth is, the toothpick may actually cause more harm than good. The sharp end of the toothpick can certainly help in removing food particles, but it can also lacerate or cut the gum tissues. This tissue damage can unknowingly cause gum infections.
A much better alternative to toothpicks is the use of dental floss. Flossing is an underrated but effective method to keep gum disease at bay. It is a thread-like fiber that you insert between your teeth in a zigzag motion and removes any food debris stuck in the teeth.
A floss pick or flossette is an easy to use kind of floss which is available at any medical store near you. Additionally, a water flosser is an extremely useful device that uses high-speed jets of water to clean the areas between your teeth and gums.
Preventing gum disease is very important for your overall oral health. Whichever appliance you use, always consult a dentist to know the best technique to use it. Ideally, you should floss once a day, every day before you go to bed.
- Earlier people ate food that was raw and more rich in fibers. Today most of the food we eat is soft and sticky. Soft and sticky foods increase the risk of tooth cavities.
- Fibrous foods like carrots are good for your gum health and teeth.
- Binge eating calls in for more tooth cavities.
- Using toothpicks to remove the food that is stuck between your teeth can do more harm than good, reach out for the floss pick instead.
- Make sure you brush your teeth using the right technique ,use a fluoridated toothpaste and floss your teeth daily to prevent dental problems in the future.
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