Posts tagged “Sugar”

Four Ways To Protect Your Teeth In the Sunshine

The sun is shining, and summer is in full swing. If you’re keen to take good care of your smile in the sunshine, here are 4 ways to protect your teeth:

  1. Avoid sugary drinks: many of us like to crack open a cool fizzy drink or a flavoured alcoholic beverage when the sun comes out. While you may enjoy the taste, your teeth won’t thank you for bathing them in sugary nectar this summer. Try and avoid sugary and acidic drinks, especially between meals. Opt for diet, sugar-free versions, or stick to water.
  2. See your dentist: on a sunny day, a dental clinic may not be top of your list of places to go, but the holidays are a great time to arrange a check-up. If you haven’t been to the dentist in the last 6-9 months, call and book an appointment today. If you’re going away, it’s hugely beneficial to arrange a check before you travel to reduce the risk of dental injuries, infections and tooth pain.
  3. Use a mouth guard for sports: summer is a time when many of us like to be more active and enjoy time outside. If you’re playing sport this summer, don’t forget to wear a mouth guard to protect your teeth. It’s a good idea to use a gum shield for sports like boxing, martial arts, cricket, rugby, hockey and lacrosse.
  4. Don’t use your teeth as a bottle opener: we’ve all been there. You’ve got friends around, you’ve bought a load of bottles of beer, but the bottle opener has disappeared. If this a familiar scenario, don’t be the person who sacrifices their smile for the good of others. Using your teeth to open a bottle could cause extensive damage.

Three things to avoid to prevent gum disease

In our book, prevention is always better than cure. If you can keep gum disease at arm’s length, this will save you from suffering from unpleasant symptoms and it could even save your teeth. Gum disease is caused by harmful bacteria, but the risk of gum disease can also be increased by lifestyle factors and choices. Here are 3 things to avoid to prevent gum disease:

  1. Smoking: smoking increases the risk of gum disease because it reduces blood flow to the gums. Smoking also affects the body’s natural healing abilities, so if you have treatment, it can take longer to recover. Giving up smoking also has benefits for your teeth and your oral health in general. If you’d like help with trying to quit, our friendly team is here to provide advice and support.
  2. Poor oral hygiene: gum disease is often caused by plaque, which forms when food debris combines with bacteria and saliva. If you neglect brushing your teeth, the risk of plaque developing increases. Take care to brush twice a day, every day and to clean along the gum line. It’s also beneficial to use inter-dental brushes or floss. If you need any tips or advice about oral hygiene, don’t hesitate to get in touch.
  3. Sugar: research shows that many of us consume too much sugar. Sugar is harmful for the gums because when you eat sweet foods, bacteria in the mouth feed and this causes them to release acids. These acids attack the tooth enamel and irritate the gums, causing them to become sore and inflamed. You don’t have to cut out sugar from your diet completely, but moderate your intake and avoid sugary and acidic foods and drinks between meals.

Five Ways to Prevent Tooth Decay in Chelmsford

There’s nothing worse than trying to concentrate at work when you’ve got toothache or missing out on exciting weekend plans because your tooth is throbbing and you feel unwell. Tooth decay can make life a misery, so here are 5 ways you can help to keep it at bay.

  1. Brush: this is the simplest yet most effective means of preventing tooth decay. Decay occurs as a result of the presence of harmful oral bacteria, which join forces with food debris and saliva to form plaque. The best way to prevent plaque from forming is to brush the teeth twice a day for at least 2 minutes each time. Set a timer if you’re worried that you’re not brushing for long enough.
  2. Floss or use inter-dental brushes: brushing your teeth only covers a portion of the mouth, so optimise your cleaning power by targeting those hard to reach places with inter-dental brushes or dental floss. This will help to reduce the risk of plaque formation.
  3. Book a dental check: if you haven’t been to the dentist in the last 6-9 months, now is the time to make a call and schedule a routine check. Even if everything looks and feels fine, it can be tough to spot the signs of decay and your dentist will be able to detect any potential problems.
  4. Stay off the sugar: sugar is a major problem for your teeth and excessive sugar consumption is one of the leading causes of dental decay. Most of us enjoy a sweet treat from time to time, but keep an eye on how much sugar you consume.
  5. Take care with acids: acidic foods and drinks weaken and wear away the enamel, leaving you susceptible to cavities and sensitivity. If you are drinking something acidic, like fruit juice, dilute it and use a straw.

Five Top Tips For Children to Cut Sugar Intake

If you read the news on a regular basis, you may have come across articles linking excessive sugar consumption to rising rates of decay in children. If you have children, and you’re eager to protect their smiles, here are 5 top tips to cut sugar intake.

  1. Swap sugary cereals for whole grain versions: breakfast cereals are often marketed as healthy products, but sometimes, they can contain a lot of sugar. It’s best to swap sugar-coated puffs, balls and flakes for whole grain cereals. These have a much lower sugar and higher fibre content, and they release energy slowly, so your kids shouldn’t get hungry between breakfast and lunch.
  2. Swap fizzy drinks for water or sugar-free cordial: fizzy drinks and energy drinks are among the worst offenders when it comes to sugar consumption among children. A standard can of cola, for example, may contain up to 9 teaspoons of sugar. Swap fizzy pop for water or sugar-free cordial.
  3. Make smoothies at home: smoothies can be really good for you, but if you buy them from cafes and shops, they may have a lot of added sugar. If you make your own smoothies, you’ll save money, and you can control the amount of sugar that is added.
  4. Swap sugar for honey: if your child has a sweet tooth and they like to sprinkle sugar on porridge or yoghurt, swap sugar for honey. Honey is sweet, but it is rich in natural sugars rather than refined sugars.
  5. Limit your child’s intake of treats: treats are supposed to be something you have from time to time, rather than every day. If your child has chocolate bars or bags of sweets on a regular basis, swap these foods for healthier options, and keep them as treats for the weekend.

5 Easy Swaps to Avoid “Breakfast Sugar”

Have you noticed that you feel hungry an hour after you’ve had breakfast or you suffer from a lack of energy in the middle of the morning? If so, it could be because you’re starting your day with the wrong foods. If you have a sugar-laden breakfast, this can cause your energy levels to spike and then plummet. You’re also likely to feel hungry shortly after eating. If you’re looking for healthier alternatives to sugary breakfasts, here are some ideas:

Porridge

Porridge is a great source of fibre, and it releases energy slowly, which means that you’ll survive until lunchtime without getting hungry. If you have a sweet tooth, avoid covering your porridge with sugar. Instead, add some chopped berries or a spoonful of honey. Honey contains natural sugars, which are better for you than refined sugar.

Wholegrain toast

Many of us enjoy a slice of toast in the mornings. If you’re a fan of toast, go for wholemeal bread or granary, as these are rich in fibre, and they contain less sugar.

Eggs

Eggs are an excellent breakfast choice. You can poach, boil or scramble them, or make an omelette. Add spinach or smoked salmon for added fibre and protein or a slice of wholemeal toast to add complex carbohydrates.

Wholegrain cereals

If you usually start your day with a bowl of chocolate covered flakes or puffs, try and swap sugary cereals for whole grain versions. Wheat biscuits and whole grain flakes are much better for you. There’s very little added sugar, more fibre, more vitamins, and you’ll feel fuller for longer.

If you have any questions about nutrition, or you’d like some tooth-friendly tips, don’t hesitate to ask your Essex dentist.