Thanks to the internet, it’s easier than ever to search for advice on several things, from home improvement hacks to makeup recommendations to health and oral hygiene tips. Unfortunately, some viral trends can have detrimental effects on your teeth – and you may not even realize until it’s too late. Read on as we discuss five trends that can damage your smile.
People claim that apple cider vinegar has many health benefits, such as calming an upset stomach, curing hiccups, soothing a sore throat, lowering cholesterol, losing weight, and boosting energy. Advocates say you can reap these benefits by drinking it straight, diluting it with water, or simply gargling it. But beware! Prolonged contact with this acidic substance can increase your risk of cavities and erode your enamel over time, making it easier for bacteria to penetrate and cause a cavity.
A lemon juice detox claims to cleanse the body of toxins can help you lose 20 pounds in 10 days. However, since lemons are the prime ingredient in these detox drinks, the acidity can severely damage your teeth. Stay away from recipes that advise you to suck on a lemon or drink a glass of what’s essentially just lemon juice.
Numerous oral hygiene products found in stores contain activated charcoal. They claim to absorb toxins and stains, promising to give you healthy gums and white teeth. But findings from recent studies state that there is not enough evidence to deem these products effective or confirm that they’re safe to use on teeth. By using charcoal products, you risk damaging your enamel by abrasion.
Do you drink sparkling water? Some people do because they like it, others because they’re trying to cut back on sodas. While it certainly is a healthier alternative to soda, the acidity can damage your teeth. It can weaken your enamel, making it easier for bacteria to cause cavities. If you must indulge, drink your sparkling water with a meal so that your saliva can counteract the acid it contains.
Records show that people have been drinking “fermented tea”, or kombucha, for over 2,000 years. They claim that this trendy drink can improve digestion, stimulate your immune system, prevent cancer and arthritis, and even contribute to weight loss. However, there are two main concerns with kombucha: its acidity and sugar content. These two factors can damage your enamel, weaken it, and make your teeth more susceptible to cavity-causing bacteria.
Next time you come across a viral health trend, take a second to think about how it could affect your oral health. You should always consult with your dentist before adding something new to your at-home dental care routine.
About the Author
Dr. Winston Eaddy brings several decades of general and specialty experience to Eaddy Dentistry. He graduated from the College of Dental Medicine at the Medical University of S.C. in 1973. He’s proud to provide exceptional dental care to those in the Lakeway area with his son, Dr. Daniel Eaddy. Visit our website or call (512) 263-4252 to learn more about popular trends that can harm your teeth.