at Moreno Valley Dental are realistic enough to not suggest that you avoid candy altogether. However, we want to make sure you are empowered with enough knowledge to make educated decisions about what and how much you consume.
Sugar Doesn’t Actually Cause Cavities
Many people believe that the sugar in candy will cause teeth to rot. Sugar definitely has a role in tooth decay, but it doesn’t do the dirty work of causing cavities on its own. In actuality, Streptococcus mutans, or S. mutans are the bacteria that create lactic acid which weakens tooth enamel. Next, the germs attack the dentin of your teeth. S. mutans mix with food debris to create plaque. When plaque is stuck to the teeth for too long, the biofilm hardens and turns to tartar. At that point, you will need help from your dental hygienist and dentist to remove the calcified plaque from your teeth and avoid tooth decay and gum disease.
The Best Choice for Candy is…Chocolate
Chocolate has been shown in studies to inhibit the growth of S. mutans. The American Dental Hygienist’s Association (ADHA) says that chocolate has an inherent defense mechanism that causes less tooth decay than other candies. Theobromine is another compound in the cocoa bean which has been shown to harden tooth enamel. Still, most of the candy that is pushed during holidays is enhanced with tons of extra sugar, corn syrup, processed peanut butter and caramel, and other ingredients that will do more harm than good, even if they are covered in chocolate. The healthiest chocolates are dark versions with a higher percentages of cacao. Not only is dark chocolate better for your teeth than other sweets, but researchers say chocolate consumption can benefit heart health, as well.
Dental Checkups in Moreno Valley, CA
If you are in need of any general dentistry services, schedule an appointment at our Moreno Valley, CA dentist office by contacting us at (951) 697-6800. Located in the 92533 area, we proudly serve patients from Moreno Valley and all surrounding communities.