The holidays are here, and that means lots of sugary treats at every turn. At Docklands Dental Studio, we know it is next to impossible to completely avoid the food and drink delicacies available at this time of year. The puddings, rum balls, cookies, and candy are just too tempting. Instead, we urge you to enjoy these goodies in moderation, and follow a few tips from us to help keep your teeth healthy into the new year. If you have any questions or concerns, or wish to schedule an appointment with one of our dentists, call our Docklands dental office at (03) 9021-9487 and a member of our caring staff will be happy to help you.
Naughty List Treats
The following is a list of food and beverages you should try to avoid, or at least consume in moderation, whenever possible during the holidays.
- Candy canes and other hard candy – All hard candy is bad for your teeth, but candy canes pose a special problem, as they linger in your mouth as you dissolve them, flooding your teeth with bacteria causing sugars.
- Cookies – Cookies are a big hit during the holidays, but they are bad news for your teeth. Cookies are full of sugar, and the icing used on many holiday cookies has coloring that can stain your teeth.
- Caramels and sticky candy – Also found in abundance this time of year, caramels stick to your teeth, stimulating tooth decay. They are also able to rip out fillings, so be careful!
- Holiday Beverages – Egg nog and many punches contain plenty of sugar to do damage to your teeth by themselves, but when alcohol is added the production of saliva, which helps wash away sugars and acids, is decreased.
Protecting Those Pearly Whites
We know most people are going to indulge at least a little in treats that are not tooth-friendly, so we offer the following as tips to keep your teeth from damage.
- Brush often – One of the best defenses against tooth decay is brushing your teeth after meals or treats. However, you should wait about 30 minutes before brushing, as acidic food and beverages can leave your teeth vulnerable to abrasions.
- Drink Water – Possibly your best defense against decay, water washes away sugars and acids that damage your teeth. Try to drink a glass after every meal, and follow holiday beverages and snacks with a glass as well.
- Your teeth are not tools – Do not use your teeth to open packages or crack open nuts. Your teeth are meant for chewing food only, and using them for any other purpose can cause chips, cracks, or breaks.
- Sugarless gum and candy – Chewing gum stimulates saliva production, helping to clean the acids and sugars away from your teeth. Many sugarless gums and candies are sweetened with Xylitol, which has been shown to prevent tooth decay. Try offering sugarless options whenever possible.
- Don’t Crunch – Whether it is candy or the ice cubes left in your glass after a nice holiday beverage, the urge to crunch may be hard to resist. Giving in to this temptation, however, can lead to your teeth being cracked or broken
- Schedule a cleaning – If you know you are going to indulge in sugary holiday treats, why not schedule a cleaning right after the holiday season. We can ensure that you start off the new year with a beautiful, clean smile!
Call Us for an Appointment
If you are interested in scheduling that post-holiday cleaning, call our Docklands dental office today at (03) 9021-9487, and a member of our welcoming staff will be happy to assist you. Happy Holidays!