Satisfy Your Valentine’s Day Sweet Tooth, But Remember Your Oral Health
On Valentine’s Day, showing our love and appreciation for someone often is communicated with a heart-shaped box of scrumptious chocolate candy treats.
Approximately 58 million pounds of chocolate are consumed around Valentine’s Day and about 8 billion candy hearts are sold between Feb. 1 and Feb. 14.
While most of us are aware that consuming large amounts of candy during this holiday can contribute to a larger waistline, we may not think about how sweets impact our oral health.
Each time bacteria come into contact with sugar in your mouth, acid is produced, which attacks your teeth for at least 20 minutes. And the bacteria that cause cavities thrive in sweets and sodas. Cavities are caused by tooth decay that destroys the tooth structures and can affect both the enamel and inner layer of the tooth.
Some foods and candies create more problems for your teeth than others, including those that are sticky, dissolve slowly or are sucked, such as lollipops, hard candies, toffee, gum drops, taffy, caramel corn, peanut brittle, dried fruit, chocolate-covered raisins and high-energy sports bars.
To maintain good oral health, brush your teeth at least twice a day, use floss daily, eat nutritious foods, limit snacks, including candy, pretzels, and chips, and visit your dentist regularly for cleanings and exams