Everyone has heard the old adage: an apple a day keeps the doctor away! But what about the more modern dental problems that plague children and adults alike? Can an apple really help avoid a trip to the dentist? Shockingly, apples may be one of the most underrated fruits that are hugely beneficial to your teeth. For example, an apple a day could be useful in preventing cavities and other decay that may save your teeth from falling out eventually.

Apples are first and foremost good for your body. Packed full of essential nutrients and easy to take on the go, they make one of the best snacks for the work or school day. They also act as a mini toothbrush for quick tooth cleansing. Foods like apples are crunchy, and thus firm enough to act as a light abrasive that will scrub the surface of the teeth clean. For those will tooth stains, a single apple will not have a visible effect. However, for daily apple eaters the stains that used to plague your mouth may be visibly reduced with time. The clarity of your teeth will also be improved.

Apples also increase the production of saliva, which is essential in fighting off unnecessary plaque and bacteria. Crunchy foods like apples require many bites and work your mouth, so more saliva is produced. Saliva is the mouth’s natural defense against unwanted intruders, so by eating more foods like apples you are creating a strong defense to gingivitis and even gum disease.

Apples are also great sources of fiber, so they take a long time to digest. They also keep people feeling full longer, and the eventual effect is less food consumed throughout the day. Many people do not snack as often when they have an apple because they are not hungry, and consume less sugar as a result. Your teeth do not like periodic snacking when it results in high sugar consumption or the use of sodas, so have an apple instead when you feel hungry.

It is important to note that apples to contain a lot of sugar naturally and can be as harmful as hurtful if apple eaters do not brush their teeth in the evening. Do not mistake the scrubbing effect of apples to mean that tooth brushing after snacks to be less important. In fact, without proper scrubbing the acidity of apples can decay the enamel of teeth. Too many apples eaten in one day may result in a negative effect because of the increase in acid.

If you are a regular apple eater, or are wondering whether eating more apples could be beneficial to your teeth, contact your dentist who can discuss your individual situation based on brushing habits, flossing, and other foods eaten. The best thing to do is make sure that you are following a healthy diet and brushing your teeth twice a day as directed by your dentist. Call our office if you have any questions or want to find out other great foods for your teeth.