Keeping your teeth and gums healthy can be a challenge, especially during the holiday season. After all, we’re bombarded by tasty treats from October through December each year, and it takes a certain amount of self-discipline and dedication to keep up with your oral hygiene routine during the fall and winter months. That’s why we’ve collected these tips on how to maintain good oral health during the holiday season.
- Keep brushing and flossing. Whatever you do, keep on track with your daily oral hygiene routine throughout the holidays. It doesn’t take long for bacteria to collect inside your mouth – especially if you find yourself indulging in sweet foods and drinks a little more often than you usually would – so it’s absolutely vital that you keep brushing at least twice a day and flossing at least once a day over the holiday season.
- Try to limit chewy and hard foods. This can be tricky considering how many sweet treats are around this time of year. But foods like caramel and hard candy not only put you at higher risk for developing cavities because of the sugar content; they also make it more likely to damage existing dental restorations like fillings and crowns, not to mention the damage they can do to your natural teeth. So even if you want to indulge in sweet treats, try to avoid anything hard or chewy.
- Substitute healthy snacks for sweet ones. There are plenty of tasty sugar-free snacks you can enjoy over the holidays. Some of them are actually good for your teeth and gums! Try substituting a tray of cookies with an assortment of sliced cheeses, for example. A bowl of nuts, if enjoyed in moderation, is an excellent replacement for hard candy. And fresh fruit is a great way to enjoy the sweet goodness of natural sugar as opposed to the refined variety found in baked goods.
- Keep your dental appointments. Avoid the temptation to put off visiting the dentist during the holiday season. If you have a December appointment for a cleaning and oral exam, for example, show up at the appointment even if it’s a challenge to fit it into your busy schedule. It will help your teeth and gums, and will serve as a good reminder to stay on track with your good oral health habits during this season.
The holidays are a great opportunity to celebrate with your family and friends. Just keep in mind these tips to maintain healthy teeth and gums throughout this special time of year.