We all want to hang onto our own teeth as long as we can, don’t we? With new advancements in dentistry and more knowledge about good dental health, it’s now possible to keep our teeth for a lifetime. That’s really good news, but many factors are involved if we are to be successful in our quest. And yes, there are some specific diseases and conditions that will interfere with our plans. Those aside, one of the simplest ways to have healthy teeth is to eat healthy food. Whatever is good for your muscles and bones is also good for your teeth and gums.

Your teeth will thank you for eating foods that are rich in Vitamin B and Vitamin C. The magnesium and zinc found in lean meats, fish, and poultry are also beneficial. Milk and cheeses have calcium and phosphates that your teeth can use too. High fiber foods will cause your mouth to produce more saliva. That’s good because saliva has buffer chemicals in it that helps neutralize the acids created by bacteria in your mouth. Sugar-free gums help also create more saliva and work against the detrimental effects “dry mouth” can cause.

Your dentist will want you to have fluoride daily. Some dentists recommend adding a fluoride toothpaste, while others think fluoridated water is enough. Does your city add fluoride to its water system? It doesn’t matter what size the city is. It could be Denver or Dallas, or a smaller place like Dyer, Indiana. You need to find out its policy so you can make appropriate choices for yourself and your family. Fluoride fights the start and development of cavities in your teeth, so it is very important to good dental health. Your dentist may also recommend mouthwashes that actual fight bacteria in your mouth, or dental chewing gum.

Finally, what should you avoid if you want to maintain good dental health? It’s probably pretty obvious that sugar is not good for you for so many reasons, including the fact that it encourages the growth of bacteria by lowering the pH levels in your mouth. It’s not really about how much sugar you consume as it is how often you have sugar in your mouth. Sipping juice or sodas all day is extremely detrimental to your teeth. Too much sugar for much too long! Cooked starches are not great either, and sticky food just stays and stays in your mouth. The solution is to limit these foods to mealtimes and then brush well afterwards. Nutrition can make a huge difference in the quality of health for your teeth and gums. Eat right to keep your teeth for as long as you need them.