It’s that time of year when sweets abound, and you and your family are preparing for an influx of family and friends. As joy, happiness, and maybe even some chaos fills the air, it’s important that you take time to focus on yourself and how you can ensure your oral health remains in tip-top shape throughout the holiday season. To help you do just that, let a dentist near Bedford share 4 healthy holiday tips to keep your smile looking its best.
Make Sure to Hydrate
If the holidays are a stressful time, you might think about grabbing that bottle of wine and enjoying a few glasses, but before you do, think about how all that acidity and sugar can harm your teeth. While some wines are better than others, there is a common denominator that can wreak havoc on your pearly whites. The acidity found in most red and white wines can break down tooth enamel, making you more susceptible to tooth sensitivity, staining, and discoloration. Instead, opt for a nice, tall glass of ice water. Not only will it keep you hydrated, but your saliva production will increase and keep any harmful bacteria and food particles from remaining in your mouth.
Enjoy Your Sweets with Your Meal
It’s always tempting to wait until after your dinner has settled before you indulge in a nice slice of pie. Unfortunately, this can lead to cavities and tooth decay if the sugar is allowed to sit on your teeth too long. Eating your sweets with your meal reduces the risk because of the continual saliva flow. As you eat, your mouth produces more and more saliva, keeping sugar from adhering to your teeth and instead, forces it to move along.
Don’t Forget to Brush and Floss
Brushing twice a day for two minutes, flossing at least once a day, and rinsing with an ADA-approved mouthwash should be a regime you keep throughout the holidays. It’s easy to let late nights, family gatherings, and other activities keep you from taking the time to clean your teeth and gums, but if you want to maintain a show-stopping smile, spend a few minutes each morning and night to care for your oral health.
Watch What You Eat
Admit it: you eat more during the holidays than you do any other time of year. You also probably eat foods that aren’t in your typical diet either. While that’s okay in moderation, it’s important to be mindful of what you’re putting in your mouth at the dinner table.
Some foods can be much more harmful to your oral health than others, so if possible, try to avoid:
- Sticky candy: Any type of candy that has caramel or another sticky substance can linger on your teeth for longer than you think.
- Popcorn: Popcorn kernels are known for cracking and breaking teeth, so be careful.
- Candy Canes: Another hard candy that can lead to a necessary dental crown.
Take time to enjoy the holidays this year but also make sure you’re caring for your teeth and gums. No one wants to start off the new year with dental work, so cap off 2019 with a healthy, beautiful smile that will carry you into 2020.
About the Author
Dr. Brandon White earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Economics from North Carolina State University before going on to pursue a Doctor of Dental Surgery degree at the Medical College of Virginia. He and Dr. Julia White are a husband-and-wife team who offer top-notch dental care to residents in Goode and surrounding communities. From children to adults, they can take care of all your family’s dental needs, ensuring a comfortable and positive experience every time. If you’re looking for a “dentist near me,” visit our website or call (540) 587-5707.