Colorful sour candies may be fun Halloween treats, it’s their super-high level of acid that gives them their lip-puckering effect. If you’ve got a soft spot for a sour taste, we’ve got some important info for you! Over time, acidic foods can wear away the protective enamel on your teeth. This can create sensitivity, decay, and discoloration.
Just how acidic are sour candies? You can measure acidity with pH level. Water is neutral and has a relatively high pH of 7.0. Tooth enamel begins to dissolve at a pH of around 4.0.Super sour treats can have pH levels between 3.0 and 2.0, which can start to weaken your teeth. Holding super-sour candy in your mouth for a prolonged period of time means that your teeth are exposed to the acidic environment for even longer! Chewy, gummy candies that stick to your teeth are especially likely to weaken your enamel.
If you do end up with some Lemonheads in your trick-or-treat bag, we recommend that you swish your mouth with water right away. By coating your teeth with neutral water and washing away the extra acid, you can help minimize the negative effects. You even drink some milk or eat a bit of cheese to make your mouth an even less acid environment. Despite what you might think, it’s actually better to wait about an hour before brushing your teeth after eating very acidic foods. Yes, that’s right, we said you should WAIT to brush. Brushing while your mouth is still an acidic environment actually does more harm than good.