GOT CAVITIES? Sugar is the number one cause of cavities in children and adults. All graphics by Nico Villarete
MANILA, Philippines –We all know that sugar is bad for our teeth. But do we realize how much?
According to the World Health Organization, between 60 to 90 percent of school children and nearly 100 percent of adults are affected by cavities. The number one culprit? Sugar acids.
Your teeth are at risk from sugar acids every time you have a meal because of the sugar content in the food and drinks that you consume.The bacteria and plaque in your teeth transform the sugar found in your food into sugar acids that attack your tooth enamel.
Tooth enamel is the protective outer layer of your teeth that protects your teeth from tooth decay. Despite tooth enamel being one of the strongest mineralized substances in your body, once that enamel is eroded, your body no longer generates more.
Cavities and tooth decay are caused by demineralization or the loss of minerals in your teeth, which is what happens when sugar acids attack your tooth enamel.
Sugar acids are everywhere
The reason cavities are such a common and reoccurring problem in the oral health of children and adults is because sugar is present in so much of the food and drinks that we ingest. Even if you think you don’t partake in a high sugar diet you are still at risk of being prone to cavities.
Soda, candy, cake, ice cream, and the like are usually portrayed as number one cavity causing culprits, but many other food you frequently eat also contain high levels of sugar. This includes refined carbohydrates like white rice, bread, and potatoes or alcoholic beverages, fruit juices, and energy drinks.
SUGAR IS EVERYWHERE. Be more conscious of what you eat because even food not typically associated with sugar, can score high on the glycemic index.
You can be more conscious about the amount of sugar and added sugar in your diet by checking the glycemic index, which ranks carbohydrates on a scale of 1 to 100 based on the extent to which they raise blood sugar levels after eating. Those ranked closer to 100 are digested quickly and cause large surges in blood sugar levels, while those ranked closer to 0 produce a slower release of sugar into the bloodstream. Food ranked lower in the glycemic index help improve insulin levels in your system, control your appetite, and delay hunger.
Avoiding food that is high in sugar not only protects your teeth from the effects of sugar acids, but also helps improve your overall health.
Sugar acid neutralizers
While awareness about the amount of sugar in your diet is the first step in minimizing its effects on your oral and over all health, there are several other things you can proactively do to keep your sugar intake at bay.
Since the point of entry of all things sugary is your mouth, you can start by protecting your tooth enamel from the effects of sugar acids. Good oral health habits will help prevent cavities but sometimes that is not enough. Use a toothpaste that specifically contains fluoride and Sugar Acid Neutralizers™ (SANs)–the latest breakthrough technology in cavity protection.
Calcium and fluoride are effective minerals against cavities and tooth decay and can be found as a key ingredients in many toothpastes and in sources of food and drinking water. However, those alone do not neutralize the sugar acids in your mouth that cause cavities. Toothpastes that contain Sugar Acid Neutralizers™, create a healthy environment in your mouth that aids calcium and fluoride repair, while strengthening your teeth and protecting them from cavities before they even form.
NEUTRALIZED. Thanks to SANs you can have your cake and eat it, too.
Aside from good oral health habits, try limiting your intake of sugary drinks. You already know that these drinks attack your tooth enamel, and promote long term weight gain. But did you know that regular consumption of sugary drinks can stimulate your appetite and cause you to crave and consume even more high calorie, sweet food?
While it is impossible to completely eliminate sugar from your diet, brushing with a toothpaste that contains Sugar Acid Neutralizers™ allows you to splurge and treat yourself so that you can enjoy that chocolate cake or ice cream sundae every once in awhile.
Just remember, with the help of proper oral care and healthy eating habits, you can still enjoy the sweet things in life (albeit in moderation). - Rappler.com
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