Apples – Teacher Appreciation

Ask people which gift they are most likely to associate with teachers, and they’ll say, “an apple of course!”

That’s because since the 16th century, apples have come to represent what teachers experience and enable: variety, change, and growth.

And now, research has shown that apples give teachers another reason to smile. They are not only symbolic, healthy, and delicious, but have another benefit: they are great for our teeth!

So, in honor of Teacher Appreciation Week, we thought we’d explain why apples are so great for teachers’ (and everyone else’s teeth), and provide a list of some other dental-healthy snacks. All of the foods and drinks below fight bacteria, remove plaque, strengthen enamel, and even freshen breath.

• Apples: Some dentists call apples “nature’s toothbrush.” They stimulate gums, increase salvia flow, and reduce plaque build-up, which can lead to cavities. All that chewing is also helpful because it serves as a cleansing mechanism, clearing bacteria away. Crunching celery and carrots is very effective, too.

• Cheese: Most people associate dairy foods with strong teeth and bones, but cheese—in moderation (it is very high in fat)– has been shown to be particularly dental-healthy. Unlike milk or yogurt (also good), eating cheese results in a coating of calcium on the teeth, which protects them from cavities.

• Unsweetened Green and Black Teas: The anti-oxidants that these teas are famous for kill those bacteria that turn sugar into plaque. Think of them as superheroes fighting dental crimes.

• Kiwi and Strawberries: Here’s a quick way to get Vitamin C. Kiwi and Strawberries have more of this essential for their size than any other fruits. Why is this important for your teeth? Without it, your gums risk deterioration, leaving you susceptible to periodontal disease.

• Water: Water, of course, is vital for your whole body, and it is also critical for your dental health. It keeps gums hydrated and stimulates saliva, which is your best weapon against tooth decay. And don’t forget regular rinsing, which washes away food particles that lead to bad breath.

• Sugar-free gum: Sugar substitutes taste sweet and keep breath fresh without exposing your teeth to their worst enemy: Sugar. It also stimulates healthy saliva flow

The adage, “an apple a day keeps the doctor away,” doesn’t apply to the dentist. It is imperative that you visit yours at least twice a year for a professional cleaning and a check-up to ensure dental health and maintenance.

Find going to the dentist too costly? Relax. We can help. Please feel free to contact Johns Family Dentistry at 253-848-3723.

Eat healthfully and keep smiling!