Keeping Your Teeth Healthy Over the Holiday

From the candy treats at Halloween to New Year’s eggnog, there are plenty of opportunities to indulge in fancy food and drink during the holidays.

Don’t forget unending courses of tasty goodness and Thanksgiving and those dancing sugar plums at Christmas.  Even if you don’t personally celebrate Christmas and enjoy other holidays, there’s still opportunities to discover food around the community.

While this abundance is wonderful, it can create challenges for people who like to take care of their teeth. Finding ways to include good dental hygiene as part of your holiday traditions can be a fine start.

Try these strategies to focus on your dental hygiene but still enjoy the fun.

Bring your brush. There’s often a lot of traveling, and you may not have access to your ‘home’ toothbrush until bedtime or days later. But you can still brush your teeth regularly.

Don’t wait for dessert. Some experts recommend eating sugary sweets right after the main course, since saliva will have increased, decreasing bacteria. Saliva can be reduced hours later.

Focus on softer stuff if given the choice. Sticky items, such as candied or dried fruit, can also stick well to teeth and do damage if there too long. Hard items like ribbon candy, nuts, or suckers can damage or chip teeth, which could require an emergency visit to a dentist or orthodontist, a greater challenge when some offices are booked or on vacation or if you’re in a different town while visiting. Be sure you pack your dental card!

Drink in moderation. This is never bad idea in general, but many holiday drinks are heavy on sugar as well as alcohol and can also dry out your mouth.

Beware of  your braces. Brackets can take damage from unusual foods and activities. Loose wires can also hurt your mouth.

For additional questions or to make an appointment, please contact Perfect Smiles Orthodontics in Alexandria at (703) 750-0147.

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