The impact of a bright, happy smile cannot be overstated. Our smile is one of the easiest ways we can express our feelings and is often the first thing people notice about us. Of course there are certain treatments we can undergo to improve the appearance of our teeth – such as having braces to straighten them or having a whitening treatment to brighten them – but what we choose to eat and drink can also make a big difference. Here are some top tips for how to eat your way to a more beautiful smile.

Taking care of your teeth

Firstly it’s important to say that diet alone is not enough to keep your teeth healthy. You should also be brushing them at least twice a day (in the morning and at night), and regularly using floss to make sure you get at those hard to reach areas between your teeth. Use circular motions when you brush, ensuring that you cover all sides of each tooth, but don’t brush too harshly as this can wear away your gums. It’s recommended that you visit your dentist every six months for a checkup too, as they can detect potential oral health issues such as cancer that you won’t be able to see. Plus, investing in a professional dental clean at Sunshine Dental will leave your teeth feeling amazingly smooth!

Foods for healthy teeth

When choosing what to eat to keep your teeth in perfect health, a plant-based diet is highly recommended. Plants such as fruits and vegetables are ideal because they are firm, watery and fibrous and eating them encourages your mouth to produce more saliva. This in turn can help to remove leftover food particles that may be stuck in your teeth. Leafy greens such as kale and spinach are rich in vitamins and minerals such as calcium, which helps to strengthen your teeth. Likewise, the coarse texture of celery can actually assist by scraping bacteria and other food particles away from your teeth. Other good foods to include are tofu and almonds (both of which are rich in protein and calcium) and plaque-fighting green tea – but don’t add any sugar to it or you’ll be negating the good work it’s doing!

What to avoid

When it comes to foods that are damaging to your teeth, the biggest culprit is sugar. It’s one of the main causes of tooth decay, so try and avoid eating too many sweet treats. In particular those that are sticky are problematic because they tend to get stuck in your teeth more easily, as well as sour candy because it contains more acids. In general, snacking between meals is a bad idea as it increases the amount of time your teeth are exposed to potentially damaging sugars. Avoid drinking too many sugar-filled sodas but also avoid too much alcohol, as it’s associated with dehydration. Drink plenty of water instead!