This Valentine's Day, Don't Let Your Sweet Tooth Sour Your Oral Health

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Aspen Dental Offers a Reminder to Remember the Importance of Oral Health

Every year, Valentine's Day presents the perfect opportunity to indulge in irresistible sweet treats. However, Aspen Dental urges people to remember that too many sugary snacks can have a negative affect on your oral health.

"Sugar is one of the most detrimental enemies to your teeth," said Maureen Howes, Manager, Hygiene Services, Aspen Dental Management, Inc. "It (sugar) contains a complex element called glycoprotein that adheres to the teeth and forms plaque soon after consumption. Bacteria then latch onto the glycoprotein and begin to attack the tooth enamel. If preventative measures are not taken, this can lead to tooth decay."

If you feel the urge to splurge this Valentine's Day, here are a few simple precautions that won't leave your teeth in bad condition:

  • Limit the amount of sweets you eat. Caramels and gummies are among the worst because of their high sugar content and retentive properties, which cause the bacteria in your mouth to produce acids that can cause tooth decay.
  • Floss at least once a day to promote healthy gums.
  • Brush thoroughly twice a day to reduce the damage sugar can cause.
  • Drink less soda and more water.
  • If you can't brush after snacks, rinse with water to dilute acids in the mouth.
  • Work in some healthy snacks around those Valentine's Day treats. Snacks such as raw vegetables, plain yogurt cheese or fruit are great alternatives. Low sugar foods are a good preventative measure against tooth decay.

Denture wearers aren't off the hook when it comes to sugary snacks. Dentures must be brushed daily to remove food deposits and plaque. It's best to use a brush designed for cleaning dentures. A soft-bristled brush can also be used.

Aspen Dental practices are located in Connecticut, Indiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Hampshire, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Arizona. For more information visit the company's website at http://www.aspendent.com.

About Aspen Dental:
Aspen Dental provides a full range of affordable, convenient dental services including general and cosmetic dentistry, hygiene and oral surgery, with a specialty in fixed and removable prosthetic dentistry. Aspen offers a choice of eight proprietary styles of full and partial Comfidents ®dentures.

More than 200 licensed dentists and 110 dental hygienists practice at the nearly 140 Aspen Dental offices throughout Connecticut, Indiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Hampshire, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Arizona.

Aspen Dental serves the dental care needs of under-served patients by focusing on the 40% of the population with no regular dentist or pattern of dental visits. Aspen Dental received about one million patient visits in 2007, including visits from about 200,000 new patients and more than 25,000 denture patients.                    

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Mark Frank
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