When you visit the dentist, you tend to learn about foods you should avoid such as sugary drinks and candies. You will less often hear about the foods that you should seek out, especially for sensitive teeth. According to WebMD, approximately one in eight people have over-sensitive teeth1. While you might reach for some home remedies such as a salt-water rinse, there are actually a number of foods can provide relief. Check out these tips from Philips Sonicare on some helpful adjustments to your diet if you have sensitive teeth:
- Dairy: No matter what form you consume it in, dairy contains lots of calcium - a fundamental mineral for bones and teeth. Tooth pain can come from erosion of your enamel (the outer protective layer), and calcium can help re-mineralize early enamel erosion to some extent. So, whether you prefer having yogurt for breakfast, a glass of milk to quench your thirst, or a cheese platter for dessert, your teeth will thank you.
- Meat, Fish, and Tofu: These foods are rich in phosphorus, a mineral shown to help harden your tooth enamel. In addition to reinforcing your teeth and bones, phosphorus also helps produce protein to maintain and repair cells and tissue. It is basically one of the body’s main building blocks.
- Crunchy Vegetables: This one may come as a surprise, and it benefits your enamel in ways you might not expect. Chewing on crunchy foods gets your saliva flowing, which contains enzymes that buffer acidic foods attacking your teeth. Turns out carrot and celery sticks are even healthier than you thought.
- Avoiding Acids & Heat: Foods with a hot temperature and high acidity can be painful to eat with sensitive teeth. Instead of hot soup, try a chilled (but not too cold) gazpacho. Cooking a dish with lemon? Try to replace lemon with sumac, a spice that has a pungent tart, lemony flavor. Same citrus taste, but without the painful acidic assault on your teeth.
Having sensitive teeth does not mean you have to eat a limited diet. With these tips, you can enjoy meals that tingle your taste buds without tormenting your teeth. Keep in mind - the way you brush your teeth can also affect your teeth as brushing aggressively can cause tooth sensitivity along the gum line. Make sure you are using a proper brushing technique, and try out brush heads with ultra-soft bristles for a gentle, thorough clean.
1 WebMD. Storrs, Carina. 1 in 8 Adults May Have Sensitive Teeth. March 1, 2013.