Teeth have a smooth outer layer called enamel. Sometimes though, our teeth feel fuzzy or rough. Which brings up the question: why do teeth feel fuzzy? The answer lies within our diet and our habits.
Why Do My Teeth Feel Fuzzy
This “fuzz” is due to the accumulation of plaque. Dental plaque is common amongst us all. Plaque formation requires three key ingredients. After we eat, our saliva plus the bacteria in our mouth and the broken-down cellular components of what we just ate form into this thin, mucus-like sticky layer that can stick onto the teeth, the gums, and the tongue. Does your tongue have a different texture or a whitish color closer to the back? Chances are your tongue is coated with dental plaque that has been accumulating over time. The initial layer of plaque is very thin and almost invisible. It can also be easily removed at this stage by rinsing with water or just drinking the water.
However, plaque is very sticky, and it covers the smooth enamel layer. In this image of dental plaque under a scanning electron microscope courtesy of Daily Mail, you can see what makes plaque so sticky. Because of its stickiness, other particles in the mouth and more plaque can form on top of the existing layer. Over time this leads to a sensation of fuzzy teeth.
When it comes to foods, there are certain types of foods that increase the rate of plaque formation. Plus, some foods contain ingredients that can cause our teeth to feel rough as well.
Rough Teeth and Sticky Foods
When it comes to sticky foods, we’re not so much talking about the food itself being sticky like caramel. We are talking about the broken down ingredients of the food. Carbohydrates are the group of foods that contain bread, rice, pasta, pastry, and more. As you can imagine, this food group causes the most amount of plaque formation compared to proteins or fats. That’s why people with a low-carb diet typically have less plaque than someone who doesn’t.
Some foods, like spinach or kale, leave our teeth feeling gritty, rough, fuzzy or chalky afterward. The reason is that these green leafy vegetables contain oxalic acid. This acid blocks absorption of calcium by our body. Since our saliva contains calcium, combining it with oxalic acid forms tiny little crystals which can then adhere to the teeth. Fortunately, this sensation can be relieved by eating an orange or merely rinsing and brushing the teeth afterward.
Fuzzy Teeth – How to Prevent
There are steps you can take to minimize the fuzzy or rough feeling on your teeth.
Good Home Hygiene –
Daily brushing (at least twice) with mild toothpaste and flossing are 2 of the most important steps you can take. An electric toothbrush like the highly recommended Rotadent toothbrush is an excellent aid in removing plaque daily. Water picks are also useful for this purpose. When we brush or floss the teeth, we interrupt the plaque colonies and bacteria from growing too rapidly. We are also removing some plaque, but disrupting their growth is the key to the fight against plaque.
Eating a Healthy Diet –
Eating healthy doesn’t mean you cannot eat what you love. You have to balance that with foods that are good for your dental health and overall health. You also have to accept that you need to spend more time doing your daily hygiene if you eat carbs. We must also emphasize the benefits of healthy drinking water, not just for the teeth but our entire body. For tips on a nutritious diet, please read our article on Acidic Diet – Destruction From the Inside.
Regular Dental Visits –
No matter how hard you try, there are parts of your mouth that you cannot clean properly. That’s why visiting your dentist is necessary for maintaining optimal dental health. At Platinum Dental in San Marcos, our dentist recommends dental cleanings at least twice a year and more for patients with gingivitis or periodontal problems.
We Are Here For You
If you haven’t been to a dentist recently, what’s keeping you? Just pick up the phone and give us a call. If you prefer, you can also fill out the form below and we’ll reach out to you. We’ll be happy to schedule an appointment for you with our doctor. We can help you eliminate the fuzzy teeth sensation and help you achieve your ideal dental health.