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Tips from Your Jackson Dental Hygienist: Candy and Your Teeth
April 13th, 2014 by Dr. Watson

Dr. Watson is not the type of dentist that will tell Jackson residents they can’t ever eat candy. In fact, none of us at Jackson Center for Smiles will tell you that, because we all love candy. Everyone loves candy! However, we also love teeth, and you can’t eat any more candy if your teeth fall out. The best way to keep your mouth healthy and still get your candy fix is to eat the right kind of candy in moderation, and maintain a stellar oral hygiene routine. Your Jackson dental hygienist will tell you how.

Not All Candies are Created Equal

For every different brand of sweet deliciousness, there are plenty of candy lovers that support their favorite treat. Whether it be M&M’s™, Twix™, Starburst™, Laffy Taffy™, or any of the others, we all have a special candy that is too good to share.

Unfortunately, the candies that make your teeth happy might not be the same ones your stomach craves. Soft and/or sugar free candy does the least harm to your teeth.

Why Candy is Bad for Your Teeth

You’ve probably heard all your life that candy is bad for your teeth, but have you ever wondered what it is that makes it so bad? Dr. Watson and your dental hygienist break it down below:

1)      Sugar. Sugar. Sugar. Bacteria are the root cause of nearly every dental problem and they thrive on the abundance of sugar that candy provides.

2)      Consistency. Candy comes in all shapes and sizes, but because of the common ingredients, candy sticks to your teeth, allowing more plaque to form in more vulnerable areas.

3)      Deliciousness. Candy is designed to override our better judgment and be so irresistible that we eat way too much of it. And it works!

The American Dental Association gives us a more in-depth explanation. When bacteria are left unchecked, they form the sticky, filmy substance we know as plaque. As the plaque sits on your teeth it produces a harmful acid that eats away at them, destroying tooth mineral. Once enough damage has been done, the structural integrity of the tooth is compromised and a cavity forms. Eating too much candy speeds this process up and paves the way for more damage.

What is the best candy for my teeth?

Candy that is easily chewed and swallowed is best for your teeth. Hard, sticky candies stick around longer, do more harm, and can disrupt your dental work. Nothing makes Dr. Watson sadder than hearing that a Laffy Taffy™ destroyed a Jackson resident’s crowns. Pick soft candy or chocolates that can be easily washed away with water.

Do you have questions? Do you want us to approve your favorite candy? Feel free to give us at Jackson Center for Smiles a call!