When you begin to feel drowsy midway through the afternoon at work, you're often tempted to restore a feeling of alertness with a snack. Unfortunately, it's all too easy to reach for something like a candy bar or can of soda; the burst of sugar is welcome but the risk of damage to your teeth certainly isn't. If you make a habit of snacking in this manner, your neck dental checkup might reveal cavities and other issues. Instead of grabbing an unhealthy snack, opt for something that will actually augment your dental health. Here are three suggestions that are easy to pack in the morning and enjoy in the afternoon.
Carrot sticks are a convenient mid-afternoon snack because they don't require refrigeration for short periods, meaning you can stash a container of carrots in your desk. This crunchy veggie is healthy for your teeth because of its hard, fibrous texture. Chewing a carrot stick moves the food around in your mouth for several moments; during this time, the vegetable actually scrapes plaque off your teeth. Additionally, your mouth produces a high degree of saliva because of the extended chewing necessary to break down your carrot stick, which is ideal because saliva counteracts the bacteria in your mouth.
A fresh orange also doesn't require refrigeration, which means there's no harm in taking a few oranges to work on Monday and enjoying them on various days throughout the week. This citrus fruit is jam packed with vitamin C; this important vitamin serves to strengthen the connective tissue throughout your body, which includes your gums. As such, your gums will hold your teeth tightly in position. Vitamin C fights against inflammation in your body, which means that it can help inflammatory gum issues such as gingivitis. Left untreated, gingivitis can lead to immediate complications such as bad breath, which is something you definitely don't want at work.
Water might not be the most exciting snack to enjoy in the afternoon, but it's beneficial in a couple ways. Drinking water helps to rinse your mouth of the bacteria that grow throughout the day, which means that this readily available beverage can contribute to a decreased risk of cavities. Drinking water can also help you feel full and thus less likely to be tempted by an unhealthy snack that harms your dental health. If you opt for tap water rather than bottled water, you're getting a dose of fluoride that can protect your teeth.
For more snack ideas, contact resources like Sarah M. LYNCH DMD.