What Do the Holidays Mean for Your Teeth?
The holidays are here, and that means there's lots of feasting to be done. You've probably already been presented with all sorts of goodies, ranging from cakes to candy canes.
Unfortunately, there's a hidden cost to all this eating. While your taste buds are enjoying the festivities, your teeth may feel as if they’re under assault.
Your dental health might be the last thing on your mind this holiday season, but there are three reasons why you should consider it a priority.
Here are the Issues -
Here are the Issues -
1. Constant Snacking
During the holidays, people tend to snack more than usual. After all, how can you be expected to refrain from snacking when the refrigerator is practically bursting with leftovers?
The problem with snacking is that it's bad for your teeth. Your pearly whites depend on saliva to keep your mouth clear of bacteria. If your mouth is constantly filled with food, your saliva doesn’t have an opportunity to focus solely on your teeth.
2. The Sugar
Sugar is the arch-enemy of your teeth, and when the holiday season rolls around, sugar is out in full force. Who wants to turn down all those cookies?
If your teeth could talk, however, they'd beg you to cut back on the sugary foods. When you consume sugar, the bacteria in your mouth breaks it down and turns it into acid. This acid wears away your tooth enamel and eventually leads to cavities
3. Getting Away From Your Routine
If you have a strict dental hygiene routine, the holidays can throw that routine into disarray. It's easy to forget to brush your teeth when you're traveling constantly or attending back-to-back holiday parties.
Now that we've discussed some of your potential holiday-related dental issues, let's focus on what you can do to help maintain that perfect smile. Here are the Solutions -
1. Avoid Snacking or limit snacking
It's tempting to fulfill every food craving that you have, but is it worth the possibility of cavities? Your teeth will be in much better shape if you save your appetite for meal times or at least limit snacks when possible.
2. Drink Plenty of Water
If you're thinking about snacking, reach for a glass of water instead.
When you drink water instead of snacking, you give your saliva an opportunity to work on the food particles that have accumulated in your mouth. You’ll also give your mouth a good rinse, which will flush away any sticky foods that might be clinging to your teeth or gums.
3. Chew Gum After Meals
Chewing gum is great for your teeth. Tooth-decaying bacteria multiplies quickly when your mouth is dry. When you chew gum, you increase the amount of saliva in your mouth. This will help keep the bad bacteria at bay. However, be sure to use sugar-free gum and chew it for 20 minutes to get the maximum effect.
4. Limit the Amount of Sweet Foods You Eat
There’s no need to adopt a monk-like attitude when it comes to sugary foods. You want to enjoy the holidays, but you don't want to go overboard.
Limit yourself to one dessert item each night. If you’re having chocolate cake one night, that means you’ll also be skipping the pumpkin pie. Be sure to brush your teeth soon afterward.
5. Carry a Dental Travel Kit With You
Even if you’re constantly on the go, you can still take care of your teeth. Carry a dental traveling kit around with you. When you’re at the office holiday party, you can sneak into the employee bathroom and do some last-minute flossing.
6. Schedule a Dentist Appointment
Your dentist probably knows the state of your dental health better than you do, so be sure to keep your regularly scheduled appointments. If you have an appointment during the holidays, don't skip it. That's when you'll need the most help.
The holidays offer us a break from our normal routine, but that doesn’t mean you should take a break from maintaining healthy teeth. You want your teeth to serve you for as many years as possible. Keep them in good shape so that they can help keep your smile fresh and fabulous.
This guest post was provided by SummitDental Care, the dentists in Twin Falls ID that can help to keep your smile perfect and healthy!
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