How to look after your teeth during Ice Cream Month

It’s been an unusual summer so far here in Britain. That is, it’s actually been sunny! The soaring temperatures are intense and long-lasting enough to repeatedly make the headlines, so it’s no wonder that more people are indulging in international Ice Cream Month than ever before! It’s a well-known fact, though, that’s it’s not exactly the best food for your teeth. Luckily, there are some simple tricks you can use to enjoy it guilt-free!

What effect does ice cream have on our teeth?

Let’s get the obvious out of the way: ice cream is chock full of sugar. Nobody’s under any illusions! It’s one of the core ingredients of ice cream, so if it’s not eaten in moderation, it can have an accordingly damaging effect on your teeth. You may already know how it all works, but we’ll give you the short version, just in case.

It can make you vulnerable to tooth decay

Essentially, your mouth is home to a constant battle between good and bad bacteria. When you consume large amounts of concentrated sugar – like what you’ll find in ice cream – the bad bacteria uses it as fuel. The bacteria releases acids as a byproduct of this process, which gradually eats away at your teeth and enamel. It doesn’t help that ice cream is often consumed with extra sugary naughtiness, such as caramel or chocolate sauce. Over time, this can make you vulnerable to tooth decay and gum disease. Watch out for that – trust us, your gum health is a major priority for us here at AP Smilecare!

It can be painful for sensitive teeth

tooth pain

Apart from infamous ‘ice cream headaches’, for some people ice cream can also act as a major trigger for sensitive teeth. Teeth are often especially vulnerable after undergoing dentistry treatment (just like we offer here at AP Smilecare), which is why dentists often advise against consuming it when recovering from an operation.

While there could be a variety of reasons for tooth sensitivity, a common cause is if the teeth themselves are damaged or decayed. Damaged fillings, for example, can allow the sensitive inner tooth to be exposed to the chill of ice cream – which is rarely pleasant! If you know for a fact you have sensitive teeth, it’s wise to avoid ice cream altogether until you can undergo specialist dentistry treatment to correct these issues.

So can I ever have ice cream?

Of course you can! As with anything else, it’s simply a matter of consuming it in moderation. If you have a particular sweet tooth, the good news is that you can minimise its effects on you. For starters, it’s wise to eat it directly after a meal, and drink plenty of water, before and after. Eating it as part of a meal helps to reduce the acidity in your mouth, and protect the enamel. Water, meanwhile, is a good way to minimise the amount of sugar that sticks around on your teeth. Apart from those, all the usual rules apply: brush your teeth regularly, and eat in moderation!

ice cream cones

Here at AP Smilecare, we realise you’re not likely to eat ice cream while downing a cup of water after every mouthful. Nor are you likely to jump up from the sofa and sprint off to brush your teeth after finishing a cheeky bit of Ben and Jerry’s. That’s fine! The important thing is not to go crazy, and make sure you keep your oral health in mind.

And if you ever need a bit of help in that regard, we’re always here to help at AP Smilecare. Our mission is to keep your smile looking fantastic, which is why we offer a broad range of dentistry treatments including teeth whitening and smile makeovers. Why not pop into our Blackburn dental clinic and see what we can do for you?