Dental bridges, as their name suggests, literally bridge the gap created by one or more missing teeth. These artificial teeth replacements offer aesthetic and functional solutions, bringing back your beautiful smile and facilitating normal speech and eating habits. However, maintaining your dental bridges necessitates certain dietary modifications.
If you have just received a dental bridge or are planning to get dental bridges in Calgary, you must take caution when eating certain foods that can pose a risk to your newly installed prosthesis. The foods listed below can dislodge or damage your dental bridge, affecting its longevity and functionality and, therefore, try to avoid the same for maintaining dental bridges.
#1. Hard Foods
The first category of foods you should avoid with dental bridges is hard foods. This includes hard candy, ice cubes, and raw vegetables like carrots or broccoli. Such foods put undue stress on dental bridges, leading to loosening or breakage. If you enjoy these foods, then maintaining dental bridges can be a challenge. Alternatively, consider softening them through cooking or cutting them into smaller pieces that require less pressure to chew.
#2. Sticky Foods
Sticky foods, like caramel, toffee, and chewy candy, can stick to your dental bridge and pull at it, leading to possible dislodgment. Some fruits, like dried figs and dates, are sticky enough to pose a risk.
It’s important to remember that maintaining dental bridges may seem easy since they are sturdy. But, they are less robust than natural teeth and are not intended to withstand such forces.
#3. Tough Meats
While protein is essential to a balanced diet, selecting your protein sources carefully when you have a dental bridge is crucial.
Tough meats such as steak or pork chops may require significant chewing and force, leading to discomfort and potential damage to your dental bridges. Instead, opt for softer protein options like fish, poultry, or well-cooked meat that are easier on your bridges.
#4. Whole Apples
Biting into a whole apple puts a lot of pressure on your teeth and makes it difficult to maintain dental bridges. The combination of the apple’s hardness and the force used to bite into it can lead to bridge damage. To still enjoy this nutritious fruit, cut it into smaller, bite-sized pieces, or consider having it as applesauce or juice.
While a popular snack for movie nights, popcorn can be a hidden danger for those with dental bridges. Unpopped kernels are hard and can damage your dental bridge if you accidentally bite into them. Furthermore, the thin shells from the popcorn can become lodged under the bridge, causing discomfort and potentially leading to infection as this means you have failed to maintain dental bridges.
Though packed with healthy fats and protein, nuts are another category of hard food that can damage your dental bridge. This includes popular varieties such as almonds, peanuts, and cashews. To still reap the health benefits of nuts, consider using them in the form of nut butter, like almond butter or peanut butter, which poses no risk to your dental bridges.
#7. Hard Bread or Bagels
While it might not seem obvious, certain types of bread can pose a risk to dental bridges. Hard-crusted bread or chewy bagels require significant force to bite and chew, which could damage your bridges. Opt for softer bread, or consider tearing these into small pieces you can chew with the back teeth.
#8. Seeds and Grains
Seeds and grains like those found in multi-grain bread or certain types of fruits (think strawberries, kiwis, or seeded watermelons) are small but can prove problematic. If not thoroughly cleaned, they may become lodged underneath your dental bridge, causing discomfort and potentially leading to infection.
Moreover, it also means you can only partially avoid these healthy food options; instead, pay extra attention to cleaning your teeth after consumption and consider options like seedless fruits or bread made from refined flour.
#9. Hard Crackers and Pretzels
Like hard bread, hard crackers and pretzels can also put unnecessary pressure on your dental bridge. The force required to break these snacks into chewable pieces can damage or dislodge the bridge. As an alternative for maintaining dental bridges, consider softer snack options or ensure you’re breaking these harder snacks into manageable, bite-sized pieces before consuming.
#10. Acidic Foods and Beverages
While not immediately physically damaging, over time, highly acidic foods and drinks, such as citrus fruits, tomatoes, pickles, and soda, can erode the dental cement used to hold your bridge in place. This can lead to the loosening of the bridge and even decay in the teeth supporting the bridge.
Rinse your mouth with water after consuming acidic items to help neutralize the acidity. Furthermore, use a straw to limit their contact with your teeth when drinking acidic beverages.
There are many causes why dental bridges fail, and food is one of them. Therefore, maintaining dental bridges should be a top priority as they significantly invest in oral health and overall appearance. Following a diet that is considerate of your dental bridge will ensure their longevity and comfort.
Remember, while this list covers common culprits, it could be more comprehensive. Other foods may also be hard, sticky, or otherwise potentially damaging. Always consult your dentist or dental hygienist for personalized advice tailored to your situation.
Just as bridges in our cities and towns require regular maintenance to keep them safe and operational, the same applies to dental bridges. Be mindful of your diet, and keep up with your regular dental appointments, and your bridges can last for years to come, helping you eat, speak, and confidently smile.
Consult Dentists in Calgary
Whether considering dental bridges or already wearing them, ensuring they fit comfortably and serve you well is our top priority at The Port Dental in Calgary. Our team of highly skilled dentists provides comprehensive dental care with solutions tailored to your specific needs while helping you to maintain dental bridges.
Our licensed dental practitioners will guide you every step — from helping you understand if dental bridges are right for you to advising on the best practices for care and maintenance post-procedure.
Don’t compromise on your oral health; book an appointment today and smile confidently with Port Dental, where your dental health and comfort are at the heart of all we do.