Dental Care Recommendations for Teens

Oral Hygiene

Keeping healthy gums and teeth is essential for someone at any age. Flossing, brushing and maintaining a healthy diet as well as visiting the dentist on a regular basis helps ensure a healthy and attractive smile.

Factors teens should avoid

Drinking Soda

The number of teenagers who drink soda today is on the rise from what it was a few years ago. Sodas and other carbonated beverages typically contain a high amount of sugars and acidic flavorings that erode tooth enamel, which can develop to tooth decay.

Drinking soda through a straw could reduce the contact these beverages have with the teeth, substantially lessening the damage. Also, drinking water after soda helps to rinse the mouth and reduce the risk of cavities. To help keep the teeth healthy for a lifetime, limit the carbonated beverages you consume.


Smoke damages the teeth. It is time to quit.

Smoking and chewing tobacco stains teeth, contributes to bad breath and increases the risk of developing periodontal disease and oral cancer. If using tobacco products, be honest about it with the dentist or hygienist. Be sure to discuss any problems or pain inside the mouth.

Eating Disorders

Bulimia and anorexia are common disorders with dangerous effects. They cause frequent vomiting or starvation to achieve a false body image. Not to mention, the associated risk of health complications, these disorders can damage the look of the teeth by visibly eroding the enamel.

Dentists can usually uncover eating disorders based on test results and can suggest psychological counseling or provide a referral to a physician. Dentists can restore teeth damaged by acidic erosion with dental crowns, composite fillings and additional treatments.

Oral Piercings

If you are tempted to pierce your lip, cheek or tongue, be advised that such piercings come with significant risks. Oral piercings put the teeth at risk for chipping while eating, chewing, sleeping and talking. The damage created by tongue piercings can lead to tooth fractures that may need crowns, fillings or possibly root canals. Piercings can also cause restricted breathing, painful infections, uncontrollable bleeding, blood clots and blood poisoning.

What should a teenager eat?

Today's busy teenagers often beef up nutritional needs with on-the-go, non-nutritional snacks. Over time, sugar-filled foods can permanently damage the teeth and increase the chance for additional health problems. A healthy and balanced diet focus on moderation and variety is essential for good oral health.

When it is time for meals or a light, mid-day snack, pick foods from each of the five major food groups. This includes meats, vegetables, grains, fruits, and dairy. If you need to grab food or snacks on the go, then reach for healthy foods that are low in sugar and that do not stick to the teeth. Good choices include raw veggies, cheese, nuts, plain yogurt or a piece of fruit.

Brush twice a day and do your best to floss daily. Do not forget to visit your dentist for regular checkups.

Request a dental care appointment in our St George dentist office here:

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