Everyone loves the feasts of the holidays. It seems like endless buffets of meats, cheeses and snacks fill our work and civic functions. Family gatherings abound with spreads of every kind. Layers of candies, cookies and other delectable sweet treats adorn every refreshment table, and there’s always something new you simply have to try. There are, however, some things you may want to avoid to keep your healthy teeth in top condition.
- Hard Candies. Hard candies can be especially hard on healthy teeth. The hard chewing can cause teeth to suddenly chip or break, setting you up for some unexpected cosmetic dentistry. Take care of your teeth, and let that rock solid treat slowly dissolve.
- Soft Candies. Soft, chewy candies can stick to your teeth, and they adhere to every tiny space between them. The particles attach and begin to work away at the tooth, causing decay in the enamel. The thick, extra-chewy kind can also pull out fillings, causing a serious dental issue and possibly spoiling your festive occasion.
- Sugars. Sugars are sweet, delicious treats, but they are often the biggest enemy to your teeth. These choice treats abound in everything from cakes and pies to punch. Keep your sugars down as much as possible.
- Feasting. Sometimes the holidays turn into an endless barrage of food. Breakfast treats. Party snacks. Cheese trays. Turkeys, hams, casseroles and sides. Pies, cakes and other special desserts. Plus a glorious array of holiday candies, cakes and cookies, all in arms reach at every stop. It’s easy to start munching early and make eating an all-day event. But while enjoying all these blessings, remember that your teeth are immersed in the festivities too, and all those substances can build up to less-than-desirable levels on your teeth. Take time for your teeth in your celebrations.
- Inappropriate Use. Teeth are amazing for eating, but they’re not an army toolkit. Avoid cracking nuts, ripping open packages or tearing tape with them. Keep your teeth out of danger, and avoid a sudden need for some cosmetic dentistry to repair something you have broken.
During your holiday break, remember to not take a break from your hygiene schedule. Stay regular with your brushing and flossing, and even add a few extra rounds if you feel the need. If you travel during the holidays, be sure to plan regular stops for oral care and take everything with you to keep up your program.
Amidst all the fancy platters, exotic treats and steaming gravies, be sure to include some dishes that are healthy for your teeth. Vegetables provide vitamin C, and the fibrous content helps scrub them as you chew. Cheese and some meats also contain calcium and protein, which are essential to strong teeth.
If your holidays are especially festive, you may want to consider scheduling extra pre-holiday or post-holiday checkups. Giving your teeth a little extra attention might help detect a problem early on, and prevent a bigger crisis from developing. Keep your holidays happy with persistent oral care.