It’s that time of year again! The holidays come chock-full of festive social gatherings, sweet treats and gift-giving. With all the commotion that often surrounds the season, it’s easy to see how taking care of your teeth could fall to the bottom of the priority list. Here are a few tips on how you can keep your smile healthy during the holidays.
Stick to Routine
Even though there is a lot going on over the holidays, MouthHealthy.org, an ADA website, suggests maintaining a regular routine of brushing two times a day. If you are due for a cleaning or dental work, be sure to schedule and keep your appointment.
With so many tempting treats, it’s probably unrealistic to suggest avoiding sweets altogether. However, MouthHealthy.org tells us that eating sugary foods with or shortly after meals increases saliva production, which helps to cancel out acids and rinse away food particles. Also be sure to drink a lot of water, especially when eating dried fruits like cranberries, which tend to stick to your teeth. Finally, try to limit starchy foods, which can break down into sugars.
Limit Your Alcohol Intake
Did you know that excessive alcohol use increases plaque on the teeth? Alcohol intake also dries the mouth and causes staining. Even squeezing a bit of lemon into your drink provides enough acid to eat away at tooth enamel.
Protect Your Teeth
Try to avoid using your teeth as a substitute for proper tools. For example, use a nutcracker to crack the hard shells of nuts before eating, a bottle opener to remove bottle caps and scissors to remove stubborn ribbons. If you do damage a tooth, be sure to make an appointment as soon as possible to keep the problem from getting worse.
For whatever you are celebrating this season, our entire team wishes you and your family a safe, joyful and healthy holiday. We’ll see you at your next appointment!