During the busy pace of this time of year, it’s easy to lose track of important things like maintaining great oral hygiene. However, giving yourself the gift of a healthy smile is one of the most important gifts of all as it’s a gift you want to keep for your entire life. By making and keeping your oral health a priority this season, you’ll have even more reasons to smile happily.
The temptation of holiday gatherings
Getting together with family and friends this time of year is wonderful for your spirit, but not necessarily great for your oral health. The assortment of sugary foods and alcoholic beverages can tempt you to indulge more than usual, and that’s unwise for your oral and overall health. With increased social activities and expectations also come more stress, and that can cause you to neglect your oral health. Not eating right and forgetting to brush combine to increase the risk of cavities, decay and gum disease. To avoid such problems, employ some sensible holiday practices that can have you ringing in the New Year worry-free.
Consume wine sensibly
Wine has high acidity levels, whether it’s red or white. That acid can eat away at the tooth enamel that protects teeth against cavities and decay. To prevent such damage, consume wine in moderation, don’t swish it around in your mouth, and drink water periodically to rinse the acid from your teeth.
Limit sugary treats
Cookies, chocolate, candy canes and other sugary treats this time of year provide ample food for the bacteria in your mouth to thrive. Increased bacteria make it more likely you’ll develop cavities, but you can prevent this by brushing and flossing after eating sweets, chewing sugarless gum and drinking plenty of water. All of those activities boost saliva production and helps wash bacteria from your mouth.
We discussed reducing holiday stress in a previous post, but it doesn’t hurt to reiterate the point. When you’re feeling stress, it can lead to teeth clenching or grinding and result in headaches, jaw pain, and chipped teeth. Relieving and reducing stress when possible helps as does asking your dentist about a night guard to prevent tooth damage from nightly teeth grinding. If you feel yourself becoming stressed, try not to clench your jaw and find effective ways to relax.
The gift of great oral health is something that continues giving throughout the year, and you can get a jump start on an amazing new year with Creative Dental and our wide range of dentistry services.