March 18, 2021
From TikTok to Instagram, social media platforms and their stars have become the go-to source for the latest trends. The moment you open the app, your feed is flooded with the newest challenges and must-know tips, spreading this content to millions of its users. While some of the movements are positive, some fads do more harm than good. To keep your smile in pristine condition, read on to learn three popular trends that are bad for your teeth!
#1. Apple Cider Vinegar Shots
Seemingly overnight, lifestyle influencers across all platforms were sharing the secret to their clear skin, healthy gut, and maintained weight: apple cider vinegar shots. While the benefits of this elixir are tempting, it is important to also consider the negative effects it can have on your smile. Since the pH balance of this drink is between 3.3 to 3.5, prolonged exposure can erode your enamel, resulting in significant decay and cavities. To prevent that from happening, make sure to use a straw, rinse with water thoroughly after, and do NOT brush immediately. Even waiting 30 minutes can help the pH levels in your mouth balance out, reducing your likelihood of further harm.
#2. Lemon Juice Detoxes
Lemon detoxes have been a staple of diet culture for decades. Unfortunately, some cleanses take it too far, encouraging participants to drink a lemon water concoction – no solid foods allowed. This poses two problems. First, lemon juice is extremely acidic, which creates an environment for your enamel to weaken. Second, sticking to a liquid-only diet doesn’t stimulate the production of saliva like when you chew. Together, you can end the detox with cavities, acid erosion, and more. With this in mind, it’s a good idea to avoid extreme crash diets and always talk to your dentist and doctor before starting a new regimen.
#3. Activated Charcoal for Teeth Whitening
If you love an iced coffee to kick off your morning or a delicious glass of wine after a long day at work, you may begin to notice some discoloration over time. Although there are a number of over-the-counter, ADA-approved whitening products designed to help that exact issue, many social media stars are using activated charcoal to attempt to remove stubborn surface stains. However, there aren’t any scientific studies that prove it’s safe to use on your teeth (or effective!). Therefore, it’s best to get recommendations directly from your dentist on which products to use to brighten your smile.
Social media is a great source of entertaining videos and a much-needed break from the hustle and bustle of everyday life, but it shouldn’t be viewed as the go-to smile-enhancing platform. If you are unhappy with the look of your smile, get in touch with your dental team!
About the Author
Dr. Ukti Phadnis earned her Doctor of Dental Medicine from the UConn School of Dental Medicine, and she has been helping patients in her community achieve the happy, healthy smile they deserve ever since! She continues to stay at the forefront of her field by taking continuing education courses each year on everything from dental implants and cosmetic dentistry to Invisalign! If you are interested in improving the look of your smile, don’t hesitate to get in touch with her via website or by phone at 860-400-3007.
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