So, you’ve been at the Ekka* and had a great time. You’ve been on the rides, visited the animal pavilion and sampled lots of food and drink, including those iconic strawberry ice-creams. You may have brought home one (or lots!) of show bags filled with sugary treats.
How do you rescue your teeth from the effects of sugar overload?
Here are some simple teeth cleaning at home tips so you don’t end up needing to see us in an emergency.
Especially when you’ve eaten lots of lollies and foods with high sugar content, it’s really important to do two simple things. Keep brushing your teeth regularly and floss to remove sticky residue of bacteria or plaque.
1 – Brush & Floss
Ideally brush twice a day and floss once a day. This removes the unwanted debris and helps keep your teeth and gums healthy.
If you’ve just had food or drink containing sugar or food acid, give your mouth a good rinse with water and wait for about 60 minutes before you brush. Why? Bacteria that feed on the sugar make acid which eats into your tooth enamel and weakens it. So if you brush teeth that have just been exposed to acid attack, you can damage the surface and make your teeth more vulnerable. Maybe set a timer to remind you to go back later and clean your teeth.
2 – Don’t Graze
Eat some of your lolly stash at one time rather than grazing on it all through the day. You might choose to have some sweet treats with a meal or at a break time, but don’t keep eating them all through the day.
Your saliva (spit) contains substances that works to neutralise the sugar in your mouth. It washes your teeth with natural elements that help to protect teeth – but only if it gets a chance to work in an empty mouth.
3 – Avoid Sticky Sweets
Steer clear of hard or very sticky lollies. They can cause your teeth to break or can damage fillings as you chew. Bits of lolly get stuck in and around your teeth, causing sneaky acid damage.
4 – Water is Safest
Choose to drink water or plain milk instead of soft drink, flavoured milk or sports drinks. These contain large amounts of food acid and sugar. Tap water contains appropriate levels of fluoride to help remineralise your tooth surfaces. Stronger teeth have a stronger resistance to tooth decay.
5 – Beware of Hidden Sugars
Be aware that processed food contains “hidden sugars” – often large quantities!
If you’re interested in finding out more about what’s actually in your food, you can visit the ADA (Australian Dental Association) website. The News and Media tab has several great articles. Here’s the link: https://www.ada.org.au/News-Media/ADA-in-the-News
The movie “That Sugar Film” is also a useful introduction to finding out about hidden sugars.
If you have any concerns or you’d like some help to look after your teeth, please contact us at Renton Dental. You can email us through our website, contact us via Facebook or call us on 07 3369 2340.
Renton Dental – We’re here for you
*Ekka is the local name for the Brisbane region show. The name Ekka is a shortened version of its original name “The Exhibition”.