A guide to protecting your teeth over the holidays

  • Posted on: Oct 26 2017

The last few months of the year always seem to fly by as fast as a New York minute. As a society, we bounce from one holiday to the next, taking time only to sweep up old decorations and replace them with shiny ones until the Times Square ball drops and a new year is ushered in.

With all the rushing around, it’s likely the last thing on your mind is dental care. Unfortunately for you, holidays are a dangerous time for teeth. Here are three easy rules to remember as you fill your days with a whirlwind of errands and last-minute gift runs. Keep them in mind and you won’t even have to add them to your list of resolutions once the clock strikes midnight on December 31.

Keep your teeth clean

We get it. Your mornings are packed, and by the time you get the chance to sleep, you just want to be in bed. When you’re exhausted, taking the time to brush AND floss AND wrestle with the waterpik AND use your at-home whitening kit–all while reminding your children to the same–is, well, easy to avoid. Still, making time to make it happen should be a priority. If it helps, set an alarm to remind you or squeeze it in between episodes of whatever show you’re currently binge watching. If you’re traveling over holidays, don’t forget to pack suitcase-friendly dental care items.

Watch what you eat

Holiday parties and gatherings are ripe with snacks and drinks that are simply delicious–and simply terrible for your teeth. Be wise when you select your sweets during trickortreat season; sticky and hard candies can be particularly brutal on your teeth. If you don’t have an opportunity to brush soon after consuming then, try to at least do a rinse with a glass of water. As November approaches, savory comfort foods become the norm, but even Thanksgiving feasts come with sugar-packed delights, like candied sweet potatoes, cranberry sauce, and pies galore. Don’t feel like you have to skip out completely, but don’t overdo it or forget to take care of your mouth after dinner. Holiday parties are also filled with opportunities to imbibe. When soda, juices, coffee, tea, and wines (even white) are flowing, remember to keep things in moderation. Thanks to their sugars and acids, these beverages and more can do damage to your enamel over time.

Don’t neglect the dentist

Amid the hustle and bustle, don’t forget to schedule end-of -the-year check-ups and appointments. This is especially good to keep in mind if your insurance is scheduled according to the calendar year and you have yet to meet your deduction, or if the months leading up to the end of December were particularly rough on you or your family members’ teeth.

Holidays are a great opportunity to celebrate life and gather with family and friends over activities, traditions, and fabulous food and drinks. Although you shouldn’t sacrifice your enjoyment of the season, be mindful of the way that it can impact your mouth. Even small choices can make a positive difference in your overall oral health. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to call or make an appointment. We’re happy to help!

Posted in: Oral Hygiene