17 Dec On the 12th day of Christmas, my dentist gave to me…
On the 12th day of Christmas, my dentist gave to me… a handy guide to healthy holiday teeth! The festive period can be a tough time for our teeth and gums, but the team at Long Sutton dentistry are on hand to keep you smiling through the New Year.
Day 1: Beware of the buffet
Grazing throughout the day is a bad habit we often adopt during the Christmas season, but constantly nibbling is much worse for teeth than sticking to set mealtimes. If you find yourself snacking, try to choose tooth-friendly options, such as raw veggies or cheese.
Day 2: Don’t brush after bubbly
Sparkling wine is both sugary and acidic, which is doubly harmful to tooth enamel – if you’re enjoying a glass (or two) make sure you wait at least an hour before brushing your teeth to minimise the damage. The same rule applies to all acidic foods and drinks.
Day 3: Choose toys instead of treats
Rather than giving your kids an advent calendar filled with sugary treats, swap it for a countdown full of fun family games, jokes, or puzzle activities.
Day 4. Carol as you clean
Most people don’t brush for the optimal two minutes each time, but if you hum a few verses of your favourite holiday songs while you clean your teeth, you’ll likely hit the target.
Day 5: Don’t cut tape with teeth
Using teeth as tools is a common cause of dental emergencies over the festive period. Ripping open presents, tearing off labels, or cutting tape with teeth may save a few seconds, but it may also lead to chipping or breaking a tooth.
Day 6: Take more turkey
Turkey is actually one of the healthier festive foods for our teeth – the protein contains phosphorous, which strengthens teeth and bones. Go ahead, tuck in!
Day 7: Keep drinking water
Regularly drink water throughout the day to rinse food particles and bacteria from your mouth and reduce the risk of tooth decay. Choosing water rather than soda or fruit juice over the festive period will help to lower your overall sugar intake.
Day 8: Choose dark chocolate over sticky toffee
Banning sweet treats may be unrealistic over the holidays, but you can minimise the risk to your teeth by avoiding hard candies that may crack teeth or sticky candies and toffees that stay in your mouth for extended periods of time.
Day 9: Watch your wine glass
Excited pets and children, crowded social environments, and full wine glasses create a perfect storm that can result in some unexpected festive dental disasters. Keep an eye on your surroundings if you are raising a glass to your lips in a crowded area.
Day 10: Don’t forget your regular routine
The holidays can throw everyone off balance but neglecting your oral hygiene routine can have serious long-term consequences – it only takes two minutes to brush thoroughly twice a day and another minute or so to floss!
Day 11: Pack your toothbrush
Going away this Christmas? Don’t forget to pack the essentials – toothbrush, toothpaste, floss, mouthwash, and any current treatments (e.g. whitening trays).
Day 12: Make a check-up appointment
Start 2022 on a positive note by making a routine dental and hygienist appointment at Long Sutton dentistry to keep your teeth and gums in mint condition.