All the Halloween candy may be gone, but with the holiday season upon us we can look forward to delicious food, our favourite treats and lots of sweets. Who doesn’t love the daily advent calendar, nightly desserts and big holiday meals filled with our favourite dishes? With family gatherings, dinners out and parties to attend, there will be tons of goodies that, while are delicious, may affect our teeth, gums and overall oral health.
“The holiday season is a magical time of year,” says Dr. Maryam Adibfar, one of Toronto’s best dentists. “We want you to keep your smile looking beautiful even when indulging in your favourite snacks, treats and goodies.”
Lets take a look at how you can maintain your beautiful smile when enjoying all the great parts of the holiday season.
1. Try to steer clear of candy canes: Candy canes are a big part of the holiday season. They always have been. They’re readily available at home, at school and at work functions. They may seem harmless, but hard candies like this can wreak havoc on your teeth. “Enjoying on a candy like this for long periods of time can damage our teeth,” explains Dr. Adibfar. “The sugars will be in contact with your teeth for an extended period of time and they can cause cracks or chips if bitten down on.” Try to choose an alternative that still satisfies your craving but won’t have the same impact on your teeth like a soft chew or chocolate.
2. Soda can have nasty consequences: Whether at home or at a holiday party, pop is always available. Whether it’s the ones laced with sugar or diet sodas, these drinks are never good for your teeth. The acid can sugar combine to eat away at your teeth’s important enamel and can cause cavities quite easily. “Try opting for juice, carbonated water or another drink with less sugar,” says Dr. Adibfar. “But if you must have a pop, drink it through a straw to limit the contact it has on your pearly whites.”
3. Be smart when you stock your snacks and treats: For many families it’s a custom to stock the house with treats, candies and other goodies. When it’s out and readily accessible, it can make it difficult to keep oral health front of mind. “Consider mixing in some healthy alternatives like granola, veggies and bread and dip,” says Dr. Adibfar. “You can still have candy out, but make it more of a special treat than a every day occurrence. This can help your children and you make healthy choices and reduce temptation.”
4. Make brushing a part of the holiday fun: Brushing and flossing might be the last thing on the list of fun things to do during the holiday season. But try to make it fun! Get creative. “Try singing your favourite holiday song or carol while you brush and floss,” says Dr. Adibfar. “This can help make this part of the day enjoyable for you youngsters.”
5. Remember your teeth aren’t a tool: All those gifts and presents can be overwhelming. How many times do you just want to rip into that gift with your name on it without scissors? Resist the temptation to use your teeth as a tool. “Using your teeth to open packages can cause chips and cracks very easily,” says Dr. Adibfar. “Keep scissors on hand and remind your kids not to use their teeth. The last thing you want to do is spend the rest of the holidays with an uncomfortable mouth.”
Follow these simple holiday oral health tips to keep your teeth healthy, white and beautiful. We all want to start the new year with a gorgeous smile.
Do you have questions about how to keep your teeth healthy or want to schedule check-up, teeth cleaning or routine exam? Contact us directly! Our team looks forward to seeing you.
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