In dentistry, we look at the impact of food in three ways: the kind of food, how often it is eaten, and when it is eaten. Did you know that there are certain foods that you can eat which actually help to clean your teeth? These foods are called "detergent foods." Eating these items as the last piece of food you consume during a meal can be thought of as the closest thing that you can get to brushing your teeth.
A healthy diet is important for oral health as well as overall health. Take a look at the list of particular foods that can help clean your teeth and mouth:
- Celery Sticks
As you can see, detergent foods are usually firm and crisp. They act like scrubbers on and around your teeth and gums and bring your mouth's pH to 7.0, which is optimal.
Cookies, cakes, breads, chips, crackers, soft drinks, dried fruit, and candies provide carbohydrates to the bacteria in your mouth causing an acidic environment and increasing the chance of cavities and decay. These foods are sticky and don't rinse easily from your mouth. Avoid letting these foods sit on your teeth after eating them. This is where detergent foods come into play. When you are about to finish your meal, have an apple, celery stick, or carrot. It will act like a "natural toothbrush." Also, try to make these detergent foods the basis for snacks that you have throughout the day!
Always remember, these foods are NOT a replacement for brushing and flossing. You still need good dental hygiene regardless of what you are eating! If you have any questions or are in need of an appointment, call our office at 918-455-0123!