Protect Your Smile – Say Cheese!

Say Cheese! It will make you smile – in more ways than one.

New research suggests that cheese can help prevent tooth decay. The study, published in the journal General Dentistry, found that eating cheese changed the pH balance of the mouth. The improved pH levels reduced the risk of tooth erosion, and therefore, tooth decay.

The researchers divided their teenage subjects into three different groups and tested their dental plaque pH before and after eating sugar-free yogurt, drinking milk or eating cheddar cheese. The pH levels were measured 10, 20 and 30 minutes after the foods were consumed. The only group that saw their pH levels change were the teens who ate the cheddar cheese. The milk and yogurt groups did not have the same changes.

The act of chewing stimulates the saliva production and was partly responsible for the pH change according to the researchers. They also believe that certain compounds in the cheese may adhere to the teeth which creates an additional level of protection.

The teen years are a high risk time for tooth decay partly because they consume so many beverages that are high in sugar and acids and they are not so great at brushing and flossing regularly. Sodas, energy drinks and sports drinks all contain high levels of both sugars and acids and are responsible for the erosion of dental enamel. Once the dental enamel has been damaged the teeth are more likely to decay and experience sensitivity.

Please contact Asheville cosmetic dentist Dr. John Highsmith today at 828-627-9282 to schedule your next visit.

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Posted in: Oral Health

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