December 18th, 2014
We all love the holidays, but it’s important to be aware of your oral health during these festive times. Taking care of your teeth and gums during the holidays is simple. All it includes is avoiding a few nasty habits and being aware of the treats that can be most harmful to your teeth. Here are our four dental health tips for the holiday season.
Be Careful of the Sugary Treats
The holidays are often filled with candy canes, peanut brittle, sweet chocolate, and fruitcake. All of these treats can be very harmful for your teeth. Chewy and hard candy alike can get stuck in your teeth, pull out fillings, and even fracture more sensitive teeth. Most of these sweet treats are best avoided throughout the season.
Of course, we know that’s near impossible, so don’t fret. Just drink lots of water after eating any of these sugary sweets. Why? Well, the worst proponent of these snacks is the sugar. However, sugar is much less harmful when it’s not feeding the bacteria in your teeth. Washing out your mouth with water will help keep your teeth safe from sugar.
Let the Nutcrackers do their Job
Nothing is worse during the holiday season than a fractured tooth. It means you can’t eat all of those delicious meals, and because most dentists are off on holidays, you may not be able to receive medical attention for a day or two. With that in mind, never use your teeth to crack a nut. While grandpa might tell you, “that’s how they did it in the war,” you’re living in a townhouse in the suburbs. Your aunt’s collection of nutcrackers will do a much better job than your teeth, not to mention keep your teeth safe.
Keep Scissors Handy to Open Those Packages
Everyone receives a few gifts during the holidays. As excited as you are to see what your friends or family gave you, we suggest avoiding using your teeth to tear open that package. Instead employ a pair of scissors. They’re easier to use than your teeth, and will allow you to avoid the risk of chipping your front teeth or pulling on teeth that needn’t be pulled.
Avoid Stressful Situations
We understand that the holidays can get hectic. Family is visiting, there are a dozen things on your “To Do” list, and you’re always one hour short of time. That’s okay, it’s the holidays, and no one will be too upset if things go a little wrong. After all, you’re with people that love you.
Those who stress out do two things: they bite their nails and they grind their teeth. Both of these habits can wear down the enamel of your teeth and make you more prone to cavities. As well, biting your nails lets germs and bacteria that were stuck in your fingers into your mouth. This can harm your teeth more than you know. Instead, take a breath every so often. Enjoy a cup of tea (which can help the teeth), and remember, no matter what, things will be okay.
Remember, the holidays are about having fun and seeing friends and family. The best advice for the holidays is to make sure to brush and floss on your regular schedule. Drinks lots of water to wash out the food particles between meals, and have a great time!