Closeup image of 2 jars of honey with a wooden stir stick

Is Honey Good for Teeth?

May 27, 2020 12:27 am

Honey can be found in the cabinets and pantries of most American homes, often stored in an adorable bear-shaped bottle. This viscous, golden substance is the result of hard-working honeybees. When you spot a honeybee on a flower or plant, it is harvesting nectar and sap to take back to its hive. This liquid nectar is combined with special enzymes in the bee’s honey sac, deposited and warmed in the hive, and capped with a special wax when enough water has evaporated.

Some people promote this sticky sweetener as a smart substitute for processed sugars. In this blog post, we discuss how honey compares to other sweeteners when it comes to teeth!

Is Honey Better Than Other Sweeteners?

Honey is packed with sweetness so a little drizzle goes a long way. Thus, one benefit of honey is the likelihood of using less than you might of a different sweetener. But depending on where the honey comes from, it may also provide mild antibacterial and anti-inflammatory benefits. Buying local honey may also lessen the severity of environmental allergies.

Honey vs. Teeth

Despite its potential health benefits, honey is still sugar, which increases your risk of tooth decay and gum disease. The bacteria in your mouth feast upon your dietary sugars, accumulate into a sticky film called plaque, and produce harmful acids that irritate your gums and damage your enamel, the protective outer layer of your teeth.

While honey is delicious and may temporarily alleviate a sore throat or upset stomach, it doesn’t clean your mouth. As with any other sugar, consume honey in moderation and rinse your mouth with water after enjoying it. Additionally, brush your teeth twice a day for two minutes each time, brush your tongue every day, and floss your teeth at least once a day.

Keep in mind that honey should not be given to children under 12 months of age since honey can contain spores of the dangerous bacteria Clostridium botulinum.

Questions About Preventive Care?

If you have any questions about how to protect your child’s teeth from tooth decay, contact Tots to Teens Pediatric Dentistry, your pediatric dentist in Kerrville, TX!

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