Stay Away from The Enemy: 5 Foods That Can Wreak Havoc on Your Gums

Stay Away from The Enemy: 5 Foods That Can Wreak Havoc on Your Gums
July 1, 2023

Unhealthy gums can sabotage your oral health. Therefore, practicing proper oral hygiene and visiting the dentist near you for regular checkups is essential. Besides regular checkups and proper oral hygiene, the food you consume also plays a vital role in the health of your gums. We all know that sugary foods are not good for your gums and teeth. So how can sugary and other foods wreak havoc on your gums? Keep on reading to learn more.

Sugary and Sticky: Why Candy and Gum Are Bad News for Your Gums

Our mouths contain lots of bacteria, which benefit oral health. However, there are also harmful bacteria that can fuel gum disease. Knowing how sugar affects your gums and how it can lead to gum disease is crucial.

The harmful bacteria in your mouth feed on the sugar you consume. During the feeding process, the bacteria combine with food debris creating acids that weaken your tooth enamel. Failure to go for treatment at the Clovis dental office means that the acids continue to erode your enamel, creating holes called cavities.

The good news is that your mouth tries to replace the minerals lost caused by harmful bacteria. However, if you frequently consume sugary foods, it becomes challenging to restore the lost mineral as sugars lead to chronic dry mouth, making remineralization difficult. These minerals are vital for healthy teeth and gums.

Examples of sugary and sticky foods to avoid include:

  • Honey.
  • Cane sugar.
  • Caramel.
  • Gum.
  • Toffee.

It can be challenging or impossible to eliminate sugar from your diet. Even so, you can limit your sugar intake, chew sugarless gum, drink plenty of water and be selective with your sugar.

The Salty Truth: How Excessive Sodium Intake Can Affect Your Gums

Saliva plays an important role in your mouth. Other than lubricating the food you eat for swallowing: it also neutralizes harmful acids and defends your teeth against tooth decay. Moreover, saliva prevents bad breath and protects your tooth’s enamel.

Nevertheless, taking excess salt can reduce the saliva in your mouth. When this happens, your mouth is left dry, increasing the risk of gum disease. How? Saliva washes food debris stuck between the teeth, thereby sweeping away food that would have provided energy for harmful bacteria.

If there’s insufficient saliva in your mouth, food debris mixes with saliva, leading to gingivitis. Gingivitis leads to bad breath and tender and swollen, bleeding gums.

Limiting salt intake can improve oral health and lower blood pressure. Before purchasing salt, check the nutrition facts label to know the amount of sodium per serving. Additionally, you should cook more often to control the amount of salt in your foods.

Crunchy Culprits: Why Certain Hard Foods Can Damage Your Gum Tissue

Certain crunchy and hard foods like crisps and popcorn can be tasty and fun to chew. Unfortunately, these foods might be causing unseen damage to your gum tissue. Although your enamel is strong, chewing crunchy food can damage this hard enamel. When the enamel is damaged, bacteria and germs can easily penetrate your teeth, causing infections that can spread to your healthy gums.

Besides causing infections, chewy and crunchy foods can also directly damage your gums. Your gums are not as strong as your enamel, and during chewing, these chewy foods can cause small lacerations to your gums. These lacerations can be a point of entry for bacteria causing gum disease.

Symptoms of early gum disease that you should look out for include sensitive teeth, painful chewing, red or swollen gums and loose teeth. If you notice any of these signs, visit the periodontics in Clovis, CA, as soon as possible. This is because the progression of gum disease leads to periodontitis which is more difficult to treat.


After reading this piece, it might seem that you should avoid almost every food. However, there are many foods you can enjoy without sabotaging the health of your gums and teeth. Furthermore, you can brush after a meal to reduce the food debris left between your teeth.

If you’re still unsure what foods are good for your gums, head to Valley Dental & Orthodontics. Our dental professional will provide a suitable meal plan and guide to ensure your gums are in optimal condition.