How to Feed Your Teeth

Would you like to never get another new hole in a tooth? It is possible. In fact, if you follow just a few simple rules, you are almost guaranteed to never get another cavity.

  • Here’s how it works. Everybody has bugs (bacteria) in their mouth. Decay happens when certain bugs turn sugar into acid. This acid causes decay by dissolving your teeth. Now the good guy is your saliva. The saliva neutralises the acid produced by the bugs. (Stick around, this will get more interesting.) However, it takes two hours after having anything with sugar for your teeth to stop dissolving. So, if you have three meals a day and nothing in between, your teeth dissolve for six hours a day. They seem to cope with this. Every snack between meals (and that includes fruit) adds an extra two hours to your dissolving time. If you’ve got enough fingers, count up how many meals or snacks or drinks with sugar you have a day. Multiply by two (use toes as necessary) and you get how much time your teeth spend rotting. If your teeth are dissolving eight hours or more per day, put a glass of water next to your bed to remind you where your dentures will be spending time at night in the future.
  • Before all you chocoholics reach for the razor blades, there is a simple solution. All you have to do is bundle up all of your snacks and include them with the three major meals. Hey, presto! No more decay. If you must gorge yourself between meals, some things are OK to eat. Cheese, meat, and nuts are fine to have as snacks. You can drink water, plain milk, coffee, and tea (with artificial sweeteners). Diet soft drinks are sort of OK, but don’t overdo it.
  • It sounds easy, and it is. The rest is up to you.

Diet Dos and Don’ts

Remember, it doesn’t matter much what you have with breakfast, lunch, and dinner—from a tooth’s point of view. It’s the snacking between meals and near bedtime that does all the damage. From a health point of view, of course, what you eat is very important, but we’re just talking teeth here.


Let’s look at common in-between meal snacks and rate them:


  • Soft drinks You know they’re no good for you, and you’re right.
  • Sports drinks Save them for the big race, no other time.
  • Fruit juice Juice is sugar water. A big health con in my book.
  • Lollies Pretty obvious.
  • Cough drops Not so obvious. Fisherman’s Friend = Dentist’s Enemy
  • Dried fruit All the sugar is concentrated.
  • Sugared coffee And tea, and anything else with sugar.


  • Fruit Sorry, fruit is a poor in-between-meal snack. That includes apples. (I have no idea why people think apples are good for your teeth.)
  • Muesli/Fruit Bars These things are a real joke. They’re really sugar bars.
  • Biscuits The better they taste, the worse they are.


  • Water Water is now cool.
  • Milk Plain, not flavored. Milk also is now cool. Ain’t life funny.
  • Cheese Cheese is the best snack.
  • Cold Meats Ham, chicken, turkey, etc., contain no sugar.
  • Yogurt The plain stuff, not the ones with fruit.
  • Vegetables All veggies are great snacks.
  • Nuts Not the really hard teeth breaking ones