♬ All we want for Christmas is a healthy smile for you ♬
Christmastime is here! And with this season come festivities including caroling, watching Christmas movies, and attending mass and Christmas parties. During many of these festivities, you are bound to partake in a traditional Christmas dinner and feasting which could damage your teeth. To keep your holiday cheer so that you don’t become a Grinch, we’ve compiled a list of things to do to maintain a healthy smile for Christmas.
1. Say sayonara to sweets
You may have visions of sugar-plums dancing in your head, but it’s better for you to save the sweets for Santa. During this season, your teeth are under constant attack from acids and sugar. When sugar or acid reaches your mouth, the tooth enamel takes about 30 minutes to recover from it. Caramels and toffees can stick to your gums, feed bacteria and lead to tooth decay. Hard candies, like candy canes, can chip or break your teeth. You don’t want to be calling your dentist on Christmas when all your teeth hurt suddenly.
2. Use a bottle opener
You know that one uncle or cousin who would show off by opening a bottle of beer with their teeth? Please do not be that person. Your teeth are not invincible tools that can withstand any damage. If you do lose a tooth or get throbbing tooth pain from doing this gimmick or from any other trauma incident during the holidays, go to the emergency dentist with your tooth because it can be placed back in the socket with the right care. You want to take all precautions from losing a tooth during this time of the year because if you do and it can’t be put back in, you might have to deal with costs like a tooth implant cost.
3. Watch your alcohol intake
When it comes to red, it looks better on your clothes than on your gums or teeth. Realistically, most people will have a glass or two of an alcoholic beverage, but it’s important to monitor your alcohol intake for several reasons. Red wine can stain your teeth and break down your enamel which could lead to cavities. Alcohol is also a hidden source of calories, so too much of it can make you gain weight. Lastly, alcohol consumption can raise your risk of oral cancer, especially when combined with tobacco. If you cannot abstain from drinking this season, drink through a straw and rinse your mouth with water in between alcoholic beverages.
4. Chomp on some cheese
Although sweets and alcohol are on the naughty list, there is one delicious option for consumption on the nice list – cheese! Cheese is good for your teeth. It is a food that can help your mouth return to its natural acid balance. Cheese is full of calcium, so it’s good for your teeth and bones. It can also lessen your chances of developing tooth decay. Cheese and charcuterie boards tend to be a staple for the holiday season, and they are a staple you can indulge in. Whether you have a set of pearly white veneers, the best dental implants, dentures or your natural teeth, you don’t have to worry about cheese doing damage to your teeth or gums the way that candies, chocolates, pop, and wine would do damage to them.
5. Do not neglect your oral hygiene
It may be easy for you to fall asleep on your sofa after watching Home Alone 2, without brushing your teeth. However, you do not want to loosen the reins on your oral hygiene routine this season. Remember to keep up with your nightly routine of flossing, brushing, and gargling with mouthwash. Your teeth pay the price if you forget to floss and brush them. You might end up with plaque buildup, cavities that would require fillings, a tooth infection that could lead to a root canal or dental implant cost, or even bad breath. And, for sure, no one will want to kiss you under the mistletoe if you have any of those issues.