Over the years we have heard about all of the different types of crash diets to help lose weight. There has been the Atkin’s diet, a juice cleanse, and now the Paleo diet. I am not here to tell you what diet you should or should not try. However, it is important to see how some of these could affect your oral health. You don’t want to finish a round of dieting and have a mouth full of cavities to show for it.
When you think of dieting, you think of eating less food. Obviously the goal is to lose weight by ingesting fewer calories each day. However, by eating less you can change the amount and the content of your saliva. Decreased saliva flow increases your risk of tooth decay. So if you are dramatically cutting back on how much you are eating, be extra careful in taking care of your teeth and gums.
Juice cleanses have become popular over the past few years. It involves drinking a concoction of different fruits, vegetables and other things that are loaded with vitamins. When they are loaded with acidic fruits, this can be very damaging to the teeth if not handled properly. The acidity can erode the tooth structure and lead to sensitive teeth. There are toothpastes available to protect your enamel (Pronamel) and it is important to drink plenty of water after ingesting the different juice mixtures. This will help to wash away some of the acidity from the teeth. And you don’t want to brush your teeth right after ingesting a citrus drink. The tooth is more vulnerable to erosion right after exposure and should be given at least 30 minutes before brushing with an abrasive tooth brush and toothpaste.
We don’t want to talk you out of dieting, but just be sure to know how it could affect your oral and overall health before starting a program. And for more information you can visit www.dentistwestchester.com.
Lee T. Brown, DDS
Brown and Kupper, DDS