Dental surgeons love candy, too! We wouldn’t be doing our due diligence though if we let you enjoy all that Valentine’s Day sugar without a warning. Don’t worry, we aren’t forbidding candy by any means. This post is about how to prevent dental damage while enjoying that Valentine’s Day candy!
What does candy do to teeth?
After eating candy, or any food, the sugar will sit on your teeth and gums. Saliva washes some away but has a hard time with sticky, chewy sugar. Sugar that stays behind on teeth or gums becomes food for bacteria in your mouth that can lead to dental trouble. So, how do you choose the best Valentine’s Day candy for your teeth?
1) Chocolate is our friend!
Soft chocolates melt quickly and get washed off teeth easily. Hard and gummy candies that stick in your mouth, on the other hand, gives that bacteria we mentioned more time to feed and erode your enamel.
2) Limit eating the Valentine’s Day candy to after your meals.
Think of them as a dessert! Not only does this increase the chance you’ll drink water and wash away some of that sugar, but combining the candy with a meal keeps your teeth from being hit by straight sugar.
When you drink tap water, the fluoride in the water fortifies your dental enamel. Water also helps to wash away the bacteria and sugars from your food, limiting the harmful effects of Valentine’s Day candy. Be sure to choose water over sugary drinks to wash down those sweets!
4) After eating brush and floss, but wait a few minutes to do it.
It’s always a great idea to brush your teeth after sweet treats. However, waiting a bit ensures you’re not scrubbing at teeth that are weakened by acid. Waiting half an hour to brush gives minerals a chance to redeposit on the enamel and the pH of your mouth to rebalance.
5) Consider non-candy treats for Valentine’s Day!
Other foods can be romantic, and there are all sorts of fruit arrangements or seafood dinners available to couples looking to show affection through food. While skipping candy entirely will always be the best option for your oral health, we know sweets bring joy to many.
Thankfully, there are plenty of ways to keep your teeth healthy after eating sugary Valentine’s Day candies. Remember though to show your teeth some love, too. Ocoee Oral Surgery wishes all our patients a Happy Valentine’s Day!