Now that Christmas and Valentine’s seasons are over, we are quickly approaching Easter, followed by Halloween and soon thanksgiving. It seems that you’re bombarded with candy and other sweet items to eat in all seasons of the year. Now that in-person meetups are becoming more and more safe and popular, we are spending more time with our families as well as attending events, ceremonies, parties, and other things of the sort. It seems there is one thing all these events and holidays have in common, and it’s one member who is almost always in attendance; sugary sweets and candies.
If you have a sweet tooth, your most significant concern is if you can enjoy your favorite sweets treats without putting your teeth at risk. In this article, we will try to explain how you can enjoy yourself while keeping your teeth strong and healthy.
What Happens when you Eat Candy?
The main components used in the manufacture of candies are fats and sugars. Softer candies tend to have more fat than hard candies, which have higher sugar concentrations, which is why they are hard. However, all sweets have sugar which creates a perfect atmosphere for the formation of cavities. Not only is there a high concentration of sugars in your mouth after eating sugar, but if the sugar sits for prolonged periods on the teeth after you have already consumed the candy, this can be a recipe for cavities.
The Relationship between Sugar and Cavities
The sugar found in candies doesn’t cause cavities. However, your mouth consists of hundreds of bacteria that feed on that sugar. As the bacteria feed on that sugar, they release acids that eat away the tooth enamel which can over time form holes and weakened spots in your enamel. If left untreated or unnoticed for a long time, the holes formed in the enamel in your teeth can worsen to form cavities and lead to severe problems.
Best Candy for your Teeth
Your dentists will always tell you that all candies are harmful to your teeth because of their high sugar concentrations. However, asking a person to refrain from sweets, especially during holidays, is a waste of time. The best thing is that some candies cause less damage to the teeth than others if you take them in moderation. They include:
• Sugar-free candy:
Sugar-free candies are the second-best candies for teeth. You all know that sugar stimulates the growth of bacteria in your mouth, so avoiding it is ideal for preventing the formation of cavities and maintaining healthy teeth.
Health professionals will tell you that chocolate is the best candy option for your teeth. This is because they don’t stick off teeth to cause cavities. The most preferred chocolate is dark chocolate, as it contains fewer sugars.
• Candy with nuts:
Cavities are formed when sugar sticks in your teeth. Eating sweets with nuts reduces the stickiness, preventing the sticky sugary parts of the candy from sticking to your teeth as much and then growing bacteria that damage your teeth.
Worst Candy for your Teeth
While some candies are suitable for the teeth, others cause severe problems and should be avoided. They include:
• Sour candy:
While sour candy is less common, especially during holiday seasons, consuming it poses a significant threat to your dental health. First, they are coated with sugar crystals, and second, they contain acids that break down tooth enamel, exposing your teeth to decay and breakdown more so than regular candies.
• Hard candy:
Hard candy is meant to dissolve in the mouth, which increases the amount of time your teeth are exposed to sugars. Also, when you eat it, your saliva fills with sugar which continually coats your teeth. In the process of eating hard candies, its almost as if your bathing the entirety of your mouth in sugar, which can be extremely damaging to the enamel of the sugar is left on the surface of the mouth after eating the hard candy.
• Sticky candy:
The stickier the candy, the more damage it causes to your teeth. Gummy candy and candies that have toffee or caramel love to stick in all the nooks and crannies in your mouth, meaning that they will spend more time sitting in your teeth which allows for the multiplication of tooth decaying bacteria that feast on and damage your teeth.
Things you can do to Lessen the Negative Effect of Candy on your Teeth
- Floss and brush after eating it
- Eat candy in moderation
- Drink water after eating candy
- Eat candy with a meal Whether you enjoy a piece of candy once a week or twice a month, remember to keep your routine dental checkups and maintain a solid care routine. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask your dentist.