The sun is out and summer is upon us, which for most families means demands for ice cream and lollies will skyrocket.
The afternoon chimes of the ice-cream van that delight children but are so often a source of frustration to parents can be expected to be as regular as clockwork.
The question is, are ice cream and lollies actually bad for your teeth?
Sadly, in most cases the answer is yes. It should come as no surprise that these sweet treats are usually laden with sugar.
Why is ice cream bad for teeth?
As well as often being on the calorific side, ice cream and ice lollies contain high levels of sugar that act as a fuel to bad bacteria that attacks the teeth and can eventually lead to tooth decay.
While dairy ice cream does contain calcium, which is essential to the healthy development of teeth and bones, it is also full of sugar.
The same can be said for ice lollies, even those with fruit juice in – although these are often lower in sugar.
When toppings are added in to the equation its even worse news on the sugar front, with salted caramel sauce, chocolate flakes and hundreds and thousands all bringing more sugar.
As with all things in relation to our health moderation is the way forward. Of course, children – and plenty of adults – are going to want to tuck into icy treats over the summer, just try to limit the frequency.
Protecting your teeth
If possible eat ice cream or ice lollies as dessert to minimise the effect of the sugar intake, allowing your mouth to neutralise acid in one go.
Try to limit sugary extras and toppings and go for lollies with natural juice. Another alternative to consider is frozen yoghurt, which is seen as a healthier alternative to ice-cream, just be mindful of what toppings you choose!
Finally, when indulging in a sweet treat such as lollies or ice cream, rinse your mouth through with a class of water to help the mouth’s natural cleaning process.
If you have any concerns about tooth decay contact Bhandal Dental Practice.
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