The holidays are a time for rejoicing, good cheer and feasting. With all the cakes, sweets, eggnog and sugary treats you may be having this holiday season, it’s important that you take care of your teeth. You don’t want to end up giving yourself the “gift” of a cavity or plaque.
At Imagine Dental, we know it can be difficult keeping up with good dental hygiene habits when the holidays are in full swing. We also know how absolutely important it is that you do. If you lose your teeth, Santa won’t be stuffing a new set of them in your stocking. Luckily taking care of yourself and keeping your smile healthy throughout the holidays isn’t difficult. Just follow these simple steps and you’ll have a mouth that shine brighter and whiter than snow.
The single most important thing you can do to help your teeth this holiday season is to brush, brush and brush some more. Brush at least twice a day! If you plan on traveling, get some travel toothbrushes and brush covers. Keep some single use Wisp brushes on hand so you can give yourself a quick clean-up when you’re at the office or eating at a friend’s house. And don’t forget to floss and use mouthwash!
Related: 5 Things You Never Knew About Plaque
An easy way to keep your mouth clean is to regularly rinse it out with water. It’s important to do this after you eat something sugary or acidic. Rinsing your mouth out with water will help keep the acid from attacking your teeth. It will also stimulate saliva production.
Another thing that you can do to stimulate saliva production is to chew sugar-free gum. Avoid normal chewing gum: they can be very bad for your teeth! Sugar-free gum, though, can sweeten your teeth and stave off cavities.
This is a hard one: the holiday season is chock full of delectable treats that taste great and are terrible for your teeth! As much as you can, try to avoid candy, alcohol, coffee and sugary drinks. These drinks can all stain your teeth, and in some cases promote tooth decay. If you want something sweet to eat, opt for fruit instead: they’re high in water content, which helps clean your teeth and gum.
You should also steer clear of starch-heavy foods like potato chips. If you are going to eat anything sugary or starchy, make a point of brushing right afterwards. This will help reduce the wear and tear it could have on your teeth. You can also give yourself a break by drinking through a straw. This will limit how much of the liquid makes contact with your teeth.
Peppermint can help kill germs in your mouth and fight bad breath. Just make sure you’re adding the right kind of peppermint to your diet: eating a bunch of candy canes WON’T help your teeth. Getting peppermint oil and adding a drop or two of it to regular or sparkling water, on the other hand, can work Christmas miracles.
Biting and crunching
Open your holiday presents and bottles with your hands or tools, not your teeth. Doing so could chip or crack your teeth and injure your jaw. The only thing worse than getting coal in your stocking is having to get a root canal during the holidays! Another way of ruining your teeth is to crunch ice with them or bite down on hard candies. Let them dissolve in your mouth instead. When it comes to keeping your smile intact and healthy, patience is a virtue.
Related: 5 Common Myths About Root Canals
For more tips on how to keep your teeth as white as Frosty The Snowman this holiday season or to schedule an appointment, give Imagine Dental a call.