Why “Sugar-Free” May Not Benefit Your Oral Health

Why “Sugar-Free” May Not Benefit Your Oral Health

Feb 01, 2019

Oftentimes, when people make the decision to eat healthier, one of the first things they cut out of their diet is sugar. After all, sugar provides excess calories and is damaging to the teeth. However, while sugar-free foods may be beneficial to a person watching their waistline, they could be detrimental to oral health. The professionals at Comfort Care Dental want to help keep their patients in Calgary, AB informed on the best practices for maintaining a healthy mouth.

What packaging means when it says “sugar-free”

Food packaging that says “sugar-free” may be telling the truth in that the product contains no actual added sugar, but there may be alternative ingredients to provide sweetness, such as artificial sweeteners or sugar alternatives. Depending on what ingredient is used, they can be just as detrimental to oral health as normal sugar is.

How alternative sugars affect teeth

Artificial sweeteners basically act the same way in the mouth as true sugar does – by leaving a sticky, acidic film called plaque that contains harmful bacteria that damage the tooth enamel. An added threat of “sugar-free” treats is that people may be more inclined to consume larger quantities of them because they are perceived as “healthier.” This can be even more damaging to the teeth. Even foods that have been sweetened with fruits can be harmful as they can contain higher quantities of citric and phosphoric acid, which can weaken the tooth enamel.

Repairing sugar damage

If you have been affected by sugar damage in Calgary, AB, it is important to have it treated promptly. Comfort Care Dental offers several restorative dentistry services such as fillings to quickly reverse damage and prevent further issues with the teeth or gums. Leaving oral health issues untreated, on the other hand, can allow them to become more serious and require more advanced, and possibly more invasive, treatments.

Preventing oral health concerns

This post isn’t meant to scare you away from indulging your sweet tooth (though snacking should be limited). The key to maintaining healthy teeth and gums while eating your favorite foods is to brush and floss every day to keep the teeth clean and to visit your dentist at Comfort Care Dental twice a year for an exam and cleaning.

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