As the final days of summer heat up, it’s time to fire up the grill and soak up the sunny weather with a sizzling backyard barbecue. However, many of your go-to grill-outs foods and beverages can wreak havoc on your dental health if you aren’t careful. Acidic marinades, sugar-laden drinks, and staining sauces may taste delicious. Unfortunately, they can promote enamel erosion, cavity development, and dingy stains if indulged in too often. 

Taking the right teeth-friendly precautions allows you to strategically enjoy your barbecue without putting your oral health at risk. We will outline simple ways to prevent damage and keep your grin glowing through the last hurrah of summertime celebrations. 

  • Eat Whole Foods & Lean Proteins

When preparing your BBQ spread, build your plate around whole, natural foods that clean your teeth as you chew while stimulating saliva flow. Crunchy produce like apples, celery sticks, broccoli, and cauliflower give your teeth a gentle scrubbing as you munch, which scrapes off food debris and bacteria. Their high water content also washes away lingering sugars and acids. 

Lean proteins like grilled chicken and salmon are great options too. They are naturally low in sugars and acids. Plus, chewing tougher proteins boosts saliva production.

  • Be Careful With Your Choice of Sauces & Beverages

Avoiding acidic drinks or heavy sauces at a barbecue is almost impossible, but you can be strategic about how you indulge. For your favorite beverage, consider using a straw to direct liquid toward your throat instead of having it go past your teeth.

Also, swap your sticky, sugary sauces and marinades in favor of spice rubs and vinegar mixes. If you want to add zing, put the sauce on the side for light dipping rather than dousing or soaking your meats directly. 

  • Make Water Your Go-To Beverage

Water is nature’s neutralizer, washing away leftover food and keeping saliva production going strong. So, rather than enjoying a second glass of your favorite sweet or acidic beverage, give your teeth a break and enjoy water instead. It’s an easy way of making sure your barbecue stays teeth-friendly. Once you are done enjoying your meal, make sure to chew some sugar-free gum. It boosts saliva production and cleans your teeth from food particles.

  • Stick to Your Oral Care Routine

Before and after your barbecue, stick with your normal oral hygiene regimen. Brush beforehand so you cut down on teeth staining. Then, floss 30 minutes after your meal. You don’t want to brush right away because of the acidic foods and beverages at a barbecue. It can actually harm your enamel. Don’t forget to floss too! 

We hope these ways to make your barbecue teeth-friendly have helped. Most importantly, don’t skip your regular dental checkup. Call Butte Family Dental today at 406-565-4458 or schedule online to schedule an appointment in Butte, MT.