If you’ve never heard of “meth mouth” just do a quick Internet search and you’ll see that the results are not pretty. Methamphetamine use quickly causes severe, rampant forms of tooth decay and if the patient is able to knock the habit their teeth are most often completely untreatable. Using crystal meth can cause dry mouth, sweet cravings, and excessive tooth grinding. When all of these are put together, your smile is bound be destroyed.
What’s even more disturbing is that drinking soda and diet soda may be worse on your dental health than meth use. Many people reach for diet soda over regular soda (which is about just as bad) because they feel they won’t develop tooth decay from drinking it since there’s no “sugar.” However, diet sodas do still contain artificial sweeteners and have a low pH, both of which alter healthy tooth enamel, cause decalcification and decay.
Liquid sweets, be it diet soda, soda, sports drinks, juice, milk or sweet tea all contain some type of sugar in them, whether it’s natural or not. While sweets are ok in moderation, liquid sweets are definitely the worst on your teeth. The liquid coats each part of the tooth’s surface, especially those in the deep grooves on chewing surfaces, and areas between the teeth. Frequent exposure to these liquids combined with a low water intake can cause a person to develop very severe tooth decay, even if they feel they have good oral hygiene.
It wasn’t until recently that a professor at a dental school in Philadelphia compared the severity of drinking sodas to the characteristics of someone with “meth mouth.” The resulting enamel erosion of soda consumption was exhibited by a study that showed it was actually comparable to symptoms exhibited by people that use methamphetamines.
Posted on behalf of Muccioli Dental
Good dental health habits help your teeth last longer and look better. If you develop good dental health habits early, your teeth may last a lifetime. Even if you have not always been diligent in the past, practicing good dental health habits will help prevent future tooth decay and gum disease. It is never too late to get started on a healthy smile!
Good dental health habits include regular brushing and flossing, avoiding harmful foods and beverages, and regular dental cleanings and checkups. The foundation of good dental care is brushing and flossing. You should brush your teeth with a floride toothpaste at least twice a day. Three times would be better.
Brushing removes plaque and food particles that can lead to tooth decay. Use a soft bristled brush to avoid damaging your tooth enamel and brush firmly, but gently. Remember to brush your tongue to remove plaque and freshen your breath. Flossing once a day will help remove harmful plaque, bacteria and food debris from between your teeth where your toothbrush can’t reach. Flossing helps prevent cavities and gum disease. The type of floss used is less important than remembering to floss regularly.
You should avoid eating foods high in sugars or starches such as candy, ice cream, cakes, pies, soft drinks, and potato chips. These foods are not only bad for your waistline, but also harmful to your teeth. These foods produce the most oral acids that cause tooth decay. Tea and coffee can stain your teeth and the use of tobacco products not only stains your teeth, but also leads to cancer and other health problems.
Finally, have your teeth cleaned and examined by your dentist twice a year. Regular checkups allow your dentist to identify and treat small problems before they can become major problems.
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