June 9th, 2016
The food and drink you put into your mouth can make all of the difference when it comes to your dental health. When some people drink water, soda, or other drinks with ice, they may experience tooth pain. Does this mean ice is bad for your teeth? Let’s take a look now.
Is ice good or bad for your teeth?
Since ice is just frozen water, the real question we should be asking is whether or not water is good for your teeth. The answer is yes! Since many American communities add fluoride to their public water, water can actually strengthen your teeth without you doing anything extra! The reason communities started adding more fluoride to water (since water already naturally contains fluoride) was to help reduce tooth decay. Your ice cubes should contain fluoride as well!
Like water, ice can also prevent you from having a dry mouth. What’s the problem with dry mouth? Well, saliva swishes away bacteria and food particles, and strengthens your teeth naturally with calcium, fluoride and phosphate. When you suck on ice or drink water, you keep your mouth moist.
When ice is bad for your teeth
Just because ice can be good for your teeth doesn’t mean it always is. Chewing on ice is a common habit that many people form. It can lead to a variety of serious dental issues, including a broken, cracked or chipped tooth, enamel damage, a sore jaw, and issues with fillings and crowns. These incidents tend to increase during the summer months.
Instead of chewing ice, it’s best that you let ice melt in your mouth or in your drink. If you have an addiction to chewing ice, we recommend that you carry carrots, celery, or apples with you when you’re feeling the urge to chew. Don’t hesitate to speak with us if you’re having trouble kicking your ice addiction.
Why does ice hurt your teeth?
Since we already covered the fact that ice is good for your teeth, why do so many people experience pain when ice comes into contact with their mouth? This issue comes down to a problem with your mouth - not frozen water. You probably notice similar pain or discomfort when you eat anything cold, including ice cream and popsicles. This may be because you have sensitive teeth.
Sensitive teeth are usually nothing to be worried about. In fact, millions of people in the U.S. have sensitive teeth. You can work to make your teeth less sensitive by using toothpaste that is specifically designed for sensitive teeth, avoiding highly acidic foods and drinks, and making sure you’re not brushing your teeth too hard or with bristles that are too strong.
If you experience very sensitive teeth for three days or more, you may have a more serious problem. It’s best to contact your dentist at this point to see if you’re experiencing tooth decay or gum disease. If you’re in Chicago and are experiencing this problem, feel free to contact us today! We can help you figure out why your teeth are so sensitive.
Tags: broken tooth, chewing ice, chipped tooth, cold food, cracked tooth, dry mouth, enamel, fluoride, ice, sensitive teeth, teeth, water
Posted in Food for Thought | No Comments
February 12th, 2015
Sensitive teeth can be caused by a number of issues including an exposed nerve, a fractured or worn tooth, and receding gums. While visiting a dentist is the best way to prevent most of these issues, you can avoid the pain that is associated with sensitive teeth by limiting certain foods and drinks. Here are the most common types of food that can agitate your teeth and cause a lot of pain.
Foods To Avoid If You Have Sensitive Teeth:
Hot and Cold Food
Many of the foods that can cause pain to sensitive teeth are not caused by the specific food but by the temperature of the food. Extremely cold or hot foods can cause pain on the fractured tooth or teeth. Ice cream and cold drinks can cause pain, but the worst is chewing ice. Hot coffee and tea along with hot soup are warmer foods and drinks that can cause sensitive teeth to be aggravated. The best solution is to avoid these types of food and opt for meals with less extreme temperatures.
Acidic foods such as citrus fruits, like lemons and oranges, along with vinegar-based foods, like pickles and olives, can often cause sensitive teeth and can make the pain that comes along with sensitive teeth worse. Acidic foods wear away at the enamel of the tooth which can make the problem worse.
Most kinds of candy will cause discomfort for sensitive teeth. Hard candies such as suckers and peppermints, which people tend to bite down on, can create further damage to your teeth along with causing strong pains. Furthermore, chewy candies such as gummy bears and licorice can get stuck inside open cavities and under gums, which will cause discomfort.
While certain foods can cause pain to your teeth, there are other foods that can help relieve discomfort.
Food That is Good for Sensitive Teeth:
Milks, cheeses, yogurt, and other dairy products contain a protective protein layer known as casein. This protein acts as a shield from acidic elements that tend to hurt the teeth. As well, casein is able to keep minerals essential to healthy teeth from leaving the tooth.
Oxalic acid is in many nutrient-rich foods, such as spinach, carrots, and radishes. It is what causes the fuzzy feeling on your teeth when eating. This feeling is oxalate crystals precipitating on your teeth, which helps plug up dentinal tubules. This is the area where pain starts. Try eating foods rich in oxalic acid to help stop pain and reverse the causes of the sensitive teeth.
Of course, the best way to prevent sensitive teeth is by proper oral hygiene practices and visiting your dentist at least twice a year. Properly flossing once a day and brushing your teeth at least twice a day are great ways to help prevent your teeth from becoming too sensitive.
If you are experiencing a noticeable amount of discomfort in your mouth when chewing any of the types of food above, it is recommended you visit your dentist to determine the cause of the aching before it becomes a bigger problem than necessary. If you have more questions about teeth sensitivity, contact Water Tower Dental today, we’re happy to help!