If you or your kids consume too much sugar in your diets, you could be putting your oral health at risk.
Sugar feeds bacteria living in plaque on the teeth, which can cause tooth decay and gum disease. The more sugar you consume in food and drink, the more your teeth will be at risk.
To lower your risks of dental decay and look after your teeth, try to find ways you can cut down on sugar in your diet and make sure you follow good oral hygiene practices every day.
It’s recommended that adults and children don’t get more than 10% of their daily energy intake from sugar. For the average person, this means:
• Age 4-6 – 19 grams (5 cubes) of sugar per day
• Age 7-10 – 24 grams (6 cubes)
• Age 11+ – 30 grams (7 cubes)
Most Australians consume more sugar than is recommended for a balanced diet. The majority of this comes from sugary drinks and sweet snacks. Eliminating these foods and drinks from your diet and looking for healthier alternatives can help to bring down your sugar intake and protect your family’s teeth.
A few tips to help decrease sugar intake at meals-
• Check the nutrition and ingredient labels of food packaging in the store and choose products that are low in sugar or have less added sugar.
• Ingredients are listed according to how much is in the product. If you see sugars near the top of the list, this means the food is high in sugar.
• Be aware that added sugars may be listed in a number of different ways, including corn syrup, fructose, glucose, maltose and sucrose
• Soft drinks, energy drinks, fruit juices and cordials are major sources of sugar in the Australian diet, especially for kids and teenagers. A typical 375ml can of soft drink contains about 9 teaspoons of sugar.
• Instead of sugar drinks, choose plain water. If you live in a fluoridated area like most Australians, drinking tap water that contains a small amount of fluoride can help to protect your teeth against decay.
• Milk contains calcium which also helps to protect your teeth against plaque and decay by strengthening the enamel.
As well as following a healthy diet, it is important to keep your teeth and gums healthy by having your routine check-ups and cleans with your dentist. If you are due for an oral health check or would like some more information on caring for your teeth through diet please make an appointment with us at Pimpama City Dental Centre.