The Simple and Surprising Natural Cavity Prevention
The latest research is suggesting that a very surprising technique can help to save your mouth from tooth decay. This is important since there is barely a place in the world that we can go, anymore, that isn’t offering us sweets as desserts, snacks, or even impulse items near the checkout line.
Every now and again, it doesn’t hurt to give in to temptation, as long as you don’t indulge too often (leaving you with a bulging waistline), provided that you take the right tactic to protect your teeth against decay.
A recent small study that was just published in the Journal of the American Dental Association is suggesting that after you consume sugary foods, if you drink milk, it could help to reduce your risk of developing a cavity.
In order to conduct the study, University of Illinois at Chicago researchers told 20 adults to neither floss nor brush their teeth for a period of 24 hours in order to allow dental plaque to build up within their mouths. The participants were required to eat Foot Loops cereal and, depending on their group, drink either tap water, apple juice, or whole milk.
Though the consumption of the cereal reduced the pH level of the plaque in the mouths of the participants to an unhealthy level, drinking milk after having consumed the sugary cereal appeared to help to return that pH level to a level that is closer to normal. On the other hand, the apple juice caused the pH level to plummet even further, and tap water caused a negligible increase in the pH level.
What this means is that the order in which you consume foods can have an impact on your oral health. For example, if you treat yourself to a sugary dessert and don’t drink milk afterwards, you could be exposing your teeth to acids that are quite harmful for a longer period of time than those who do drink milk after sweets, according to Jeffrey Cole, DDS, an Academy of General Dentistry spokesperson who did not take part in performing this research.
Though many people believe that brushing their teeth immediately after eating a candy bar will safe their pearly whites, this is, unfortunately, not the case. In fact, scrubbing the enamel after exposure to higher acidity levels can actually lead to even greater harm. If you would prefer not to drink milk after every sugary treat, Cole recommended rinsing the mouth with water and waiting for about a half hour before brushing.