December 1, 2023

It’s no solution that what you try to eat and drink can have an affect on your oral health – think about enamel-eroding sugars and stain-inducing espresso beverages.

But by focusing all of our interest on what we try to eat, we fail to remember that how we eat and consume performs just as pivotal a position.

“There are common procedures of feeding on specific foods that can place abnormal force on your tooth, even with how wholesome they happen to be,” reported Dr Cheryline Pezzullo, scientific assistant professor and director for group-centered systems at NYU Faculty of Dentistry.

“Over time, these approaches can place you on the quickly monitor for weakened tooth enamel, broken dental restorations and greater possibility of dental emergencies.” Yikes.

Luckily, earning even a couple smaller adjustments to your recent roster of noshing techniques can help you suppress upcoming problems. Examine on to discover out the foods you’re probably taking in in ways that aren’t accomplishing your teeth any favours – moreover, how greatest to counteract their consequences.

Foodstuff to try to eat in another way, and how

Citrus fruits

Citrus fruits, like lemons, oranges and grapefruits, are acidic and can erode tooth enamel. To minimise the effects, turbo-chew and swallow so the fruit doesn’t have time to loiter on your teeth. Pezzullo also advised rinsing your mouth with h2o to support neutralise the acidity. And if spa water’s much more your pace, consume it with a straw to restrict immediate get hold of with the acidity.


Biting into apples with drive can lead to anxiety on the tooth and perhaps lead to enamel damage or tooth sensitivity. “By cutting an apple into wedges, you can push the fruit straight to the back again teeth, which are specifically made to grind, crush, and tear food stuff,” said Dr. Lauren Becker, a dentist dependent in New York Metropolis.

Corn on the cob

“Eating corn on the cob by biting straight into the kernels can set considerable tension on your entrance teeth,” Pezzullo reported. “This can lead to tooth fractures, chipped teeth, or even dislodging of dental restorations, such as fillings or crowns.” As a substitute, cut the kernels off the cob and eat them with a fork, or appreciate cooked corn in a various sort, like corn salads or soups.


Comparable to citrus fruits, pickles are acidic and can contribute to enamel erosion. A couple of pickles right here and there aren’t probable to cause dental hurt, mentioned Dr Elizabeth Cranford Robinson, a dentist at Cranford Dental in Rock Hill, South Carolina. But if you materialize to be a pickle fiend, consider experiencing them as section of a food as opposed to solo to minimise acid publicity.


Popcorn hulls can get wedged in your gums and trigger swelling, so do your ideal to make brushing and flossing a article-popcorn ritual. “As you are having, also consider care not to crunch on any kernels,” Robinson said. “They aren’t intended to be chewed and can trigger a tooth to break.”


Nuts, in particular total kinds, have a tricky exterior that can pose a possibility to tooth — significantly if you chunk down forcefully. Even if you don’t conclude up with a chipped tooth, you may well knowledge micro-cracks that can make it distressing to chew, not to point out raise your sensitivity to sizzling and chilly food items.

Pezzullo implies experiencing nuts in more compact parts (one particular at a time, chewing slowly and gradually and cautiously) or switching to slivered nuts to lower the hazard of dental injury.

Raw vegetables

The firmness of uncooked veggies, like carrots and broccoli, can involve forceful and too much chewing to crack down, which might direct to micro-cracks or chips in teeth that are notably susceptible ― say, owing to grinding or erosion.

To avoid any supplemental don and tear, “consider slicing raw vegetables into more compact pieces or lightly steaming them to make them much easier to chew,” Pezzullo said.

Don't dig straight in with your teeth, dentists warn.

istetiana through Getty Images

Don’t dig straight in with your teeth, dentists warn.

Tortilla chips

Thanks to their crunch element, tortilla chips have a tendency to morph into very small shards as you chow down, with these smaller slivers receiving caught between enamel or in the vicinity of gums and leading to swelling.

Pezzullo suggested being conscious of your chunk force as you consume tortilla chips. Chew them slowly and gradually and thoroughly to defend your gums from having stabbed, and consume drinking water to make positive any residual chips are eliminated from your mouth.

Peanut butter

Peanut butter is sticky and can adhere to the tooth, expanding your threat of tooth decay. Many brands are also higher in additional sugar, so if you are to indulge, devote in natural peanut butter in which the only elements are peanuts and salt.

If you just cannot brush or floss correct absent, pair peanut butter with apple slices. “High-fibre foodstuff can help thoroughly clean your tooth and improve salivation, which can neutralise the acids in your mouth,” Robinson reported.


Smoothies commonly incorporate large amounts of purely natural sugars and acids from fruits — additionally, their thicker texture can lead to each individual sip to adhere all-around extended on teeth surfaces, encouraging tooth decay. “Seeds or berries can also embed into teeth grooves and less than gums, major to pain and extra eventual decay,” Robinson claimed.

To minimise contact with your enamel, drink smoothies with a straw and rinse your mouth with drinking water when you are completed.

Food items to watch out for immediately immediately after you eat them

Steak or jerky

As you’re ingesting steak or jerky, compact pieces can effortlessly lodge among your teeth and gums. “This can guide to terrible breath and ultimately decay if the foods remains future to the enamel surfaces,” Robinson mentioned. In the meantime, beef jerky tends to adhere to enamel grooves and can cause harm to your enamel if not taken off promptly.

Just after taking in a meat-centric food or snack, make guaranteed to dislodge any meat caught to the chewing surfaces of your enamel (say, with a toothpick) and get your floss on to eliminate all particles from the areas amongst your gums and teeth.

Whole-grain bread

Get this: whole-grain bread sooner or later turns to sugar in the mouth just like white bread does – cue bacterial advancement and eventual tooth decay. “Be aware of bread that incorporates different grains, which can make the bread stick in the grooves of your enamel,” Robinson explained.

She additional that the best way to clear away foodstuff from these grooves is with a h2o flosser, nevertheless swishing with water and flossing very well can also be effective.


Potatoes are another gentle, starchy carb that can stick to your tooth, doubling as a feast for the microorganisms in your mouth and raising your threat of tooth decay, Robinson said. Definitely, any foods that incorporate starchy carbs should really be accessorised with a glass of water to flush your mouth concerning bites, adopted by a satisfy-up with your toothbrush and dental floss.

Tomato sauce is more acidic than you'd think.

grandriver through Getty Pictures

Tomato sauce is more acidic than you would assume.

Pasta sauce

Tomatoes are a different acidic offender that can hurt your teeth’s enamel. “When merged with starchy pasta, the sauce is far more probably to bind to your teeth and settle into the grooves,” Robinson stated. To neutralise the acidity and discourage the starch from (literally) sticking all around, drink a lot of h2o with your dish and make sure to brush and floss as shortly as you can.

Dried fruit

Dried fruits, like raisins or apricots, are sticky and can cling to the grooves of your again teeth a thing fierce. And the for a longer period they linger, the far more time the bacteria in your mouth has to feed on the sugars and generate harmful acids. “This can erode the difficult enamel surface of the tooth and inevitably direct to cavities,” Robinson said.

Make certain to rinse your mouth with drinking water following consuming dried fruits, adopted by a brush-and-floss session as shortly as you can to get rid of any remaining residue.