For many of us, this week and next week will involve gathering with friends and family and celebrating the holidays. While holiday meals are fun they also often involve foods and drinks that are not very good for our smiles. What can you do to enjoy a healthy holiday smile? How can you reduce your risk of tooth decay in 2016?
How You Can Enjoy a Healthy Holiday Smile
Question: Does it matter what I eat?
Answer: Yes. Foods and drinks high in sugar and other starches can leave behind particles that bacteria will break down. The process of breaking down these particles can elevate the level of oral acidity and coat teeth in a layer of plaque, increasing the risk of tooth decay.
Question: What are some healthy alternatives?
Answer: For starters, drink water with your meals instead of soda. Water helps cleanse the mouth of bacteria and food particles. If you want something with a little more flavor, black tea can actually stop the growth of certain harmful bacteria. For your meal, consider adding fresh vegetables, fresh fruit, nuts, and possibly low-fat yogurt for a treat.
Question: Should I floss after each meal?
Answer: At a minimum, we recommend flossing before going to bed each night. However, if you want to make sure your smile is protected you can floss after each meal. Doing so removes the food caught between the teeth.
Question: Should I have my teeth cleaned?
Answer: Yes. After the holiday celebrations contact your dentist. We can schedule a visit for a dental cleaning. The doctor or one of our hygienists will remove plaque buildup from the teeth, which reduces the risk of both gum disease and tooth decay. If you have any questions about maintaining good oral hygiene and enjoying a healthy holiday smile contact our office today.