Dec 25, 2021
Merry Christmas & Keep Your Teeth Healthy
Christmas is finally here with all of us, and for many, that means festive parties and family gatherings involving lots of indulgent treats and rich food. Everyone deserves to treat themselves now and again, and tasty snacks are fine if enjoyed in moderation. But while many people worry about putting on weight over the Christmas period, we urge you to remember your teeth, too – excess sugar consumption can increase your risk of developing tooth decay and gum disease. To help you get through the holiday season, we have lined up some key tips on minimizing the risk of dental decays and keeping your teeth as healthy as you can during this period.
Everything in Moderation
Christmas is a time that we all could enjoy tasty treats and indulgent food. For your general and dental health, remember to enjoy everything in moderation. Be aware of the sugar content in not just foods, but drinks as well. Many popular alcoholic drinks have a high sugar content, which can increase the risk of tooth decay and gum disease. Too much alcohol also increases your risk of mouth cancer.
Fruit juice and fizzy drinks also have high sugar content, and should only be drunk at mealtimes. Drinking a glass of water in between alcoholic drinks will not only be better for your teeth but will help prevent a hangover.
Include Healthy Snacks and Treats in Your Buffet
If you are organizing a buffet-style meal for a Christmas party, be sure to include some healthy options, including homemade dips, fresh vegetables, low-fat cheese, nuts, and seeds.
Brush Your Teeth After Every Meal
The longer sugar remains on your teeth, the more damage it will cause. Keep a toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste around so you can brush your teeth after every meal – you should always brush them for at least two minutes, twice a day.
Get Yourself a New Toothbrush
When was the last time you replaced your toothbrush? While everyone’s getting shiny new presents it is time to think about your teeth too! You should be replacing your brush every three to four months, or more frequently if the bristles begin to look frayed.
Timing is Key
The biggest factor for the development of cavities is the amount of sugar exposure in your mouth. The longer your teeth are exposed to sugars, the higher the chance of developing cavities. So while you are doing the rounds visiting family and friends in the lead-up to Christmas and on the big day, it is a good idea to keep your toothbrush handy, maybe you can squeeze in some quick brushes between meals, treats, and drinks!
The best time to brush your teeth is to wait 30 minutes to 1 hour after eating or drinking any sugary/acidic foods and drinks because initially your tooth enamel is weakened and softened by acid. This gives your tooth enamel a chance to recover and strengthen before brushing. If you brush too soon, you will be brushing away your weakened tooth enamel.
Brush Your Teeth Regularly
Toothbrushing is the most effective way in protecting your teeth and keeping them healthy. Remember to brush your teeth at least twice a day and floss once a day. If you are out and about, pack a travel toothbrush and a small tube of toothpaste so you can freshen up wherever you are.
Floss like a Boss
So isn’t toothbrushing enough? Toothbrushing is very effective on the front, back, and biting surfaces of the teeth except IN BETWEEN the teeth. After eating seasonal sugary treats, it’s even more so important to clean your teeth. You’ll be surprised to find how much foodstuff you remove when you floss!
Drink Plenty of Water and Eat Healthy Foods
Drinking water helps us stay hydrated in the summer heat. Water is great for your oral hygiene too, as it will help flush out the sugars, food bits, and acids from our mouth. While sugar and sweets are tempting, whenever possible, choose more tooth-friendly food options, such as cheese, fresh fruits, and vegetables. Eating cheese with your alcoholic drinks can also help to neutralize any wine acids. Your teeth will thank you for it!
Use a Bottle Opener
Teeth were never designed to open bottles, nor should they be used to open packets of crisps or nuts, to tear off labels, or to cut the tape when wrapping your presents! Always take a moment to find the bottle opener or scissors to prevent any damage to your teeth. If you do chip, break or crack a tooth, contact your dentist to book an appointment to fill the tooth or smooth rough edges.
Oclean wishes you all a safe and Merry Christmas, and here's to a Healthy and Happy New Year for all!