The environment you create in your mouth has a lot to do with the bacterial environment you create. What we eat and drink feeds the bacteria (and we have hundreds in the mouth) allowing them to create lactic acid which causes tooth decay over time.
The International Journal of Drug Testing has said that a healthy pH for saliva is between 5.6-7.9. If the pH level in your mouth is less than 5.5 you will become prone to dental caries because the acidity level will erode your enamel.
So how do you create a healthier environment? Think about what you put in your mouth. One of the ways we can limit the growth of bad bacteria is by cutting back on sweet foods and drinks. Acidic saliva can cause dental problems because of tooth damage: acidic saliva contributes to cavities, broken fillings, tooth sensitivity and receding gums even if you are brushing and flossing daily.
To fight bacteria, choose foods that balance the alkalinity of your saliva to create an unfavorable environment for oral bacteria. By lowering your oral pH, the bacteria in the mouth that produce lactic acid will thrive. Highly acidic and low pH food and drinks include energy drinks, sodas, coffee, artificial sweeteners, beef, bread, nuts, pasta, and pork. But eating foods with a higher pH can help with alkalinity. Eating foods like spinach, broccoli, cucumbers, green beans, blueberries, mangos, and avocados raise alkalinity in the mouth.
While we know that acidity weakens teeth, it has a lot to do with the length of time that acids sit in the mouth that makes it the most damaging to teeth, like sipping soda or energy drinks all day or snacking on acidic foods throughout the day. Keep this exposure to acidity at a minimum to protect your pearly whites and drink lots of water to keep saliva production up and wash away bacteria.
If you any questions or concerns about your oral health, please don’t hesitate to give our team a call at 704-849-6700 today!