It’s that time of the year again where joy is spread and good times show through love, passion, and kindness. But with those special moments comes family meals and trays of baked goods, and though it is a time of celebration, it is easy to let your oral health slip a bit. That is why we have created a “Naughty” list for holiday foods that may harm your teeth or gums.
Having dental problems during the holiday season? Don’t worry; Beautiful Smiles Dental Center is available when you need us most! Contact us now.
As given within the name, an excessive amount of candy can have a serious effect on teeth, especially in children. Candy canes are entirely sugar, and though they may seem like an easy festive snack to share and eat, the consequences can be devastating when you go in for your check-up in the new year.
Why should you avoid candy canes this holiday season? Because the high amount of sugar allows bacteria to feed on them, eroding your tooth enamel, leading to cavities and excruciating tooth pain. We recommend thinking twice before buying bags and bags of them to eat, but hey, they still do make for great Christmas tree decorations!
Caramel is delicious and can be a staple ingredient for baking and eating, but like candy canes, their high sugar content is dangerous. Unlike other candies, caramel can easily get stuck between the teeth. This can attack the enamel and cause progressive tooth decay.
We all know that milk is rich in calcium and can help the development and health of teeth, but a common misconception is that eggnog is like holiday milk. Don’t be fooled; eggnog is loaded with sugar and dairy products that coat your teeth, and if not for intensive cleaning, will stay there and continue to erode them.
Do you like to mix your eggnog with alcohol? Though a delicious treat for parties and gatherings, it is a gateway to bacteria growth. So, we recommend holding off on having too many rum and eggnogs and searching for an alternative drink.
Mandarin and clementine oranges are the typical fruits of the holidays. They are sweet and refreshing, and though they are not as bad as other baked goods and candies, you don’t want to eat too many of them.
Oranges are highly acidic and pose a risk to the enamel in your teeth. So, we aren’t saying to avoid them completely; just make sure that you are limiting how much you have.
We understand making cookies is a fun family activity, but you should steer clear of sugar cookies. Its name speaks for itself; all of that sugar will accelerate tooth decay and could prevent you from enjoying that delicious Christmas supper you have been waiting all year for.
Healthy Holiday Foods and Treats to Enjoy
It’s the most wonderful time of the year, and with that comes food. We know that you want to continue snacking and indulging in delicious treats, so we also wanted to make a small list of holiday foods that are good for your teeth:
You can’t have Christmas without the savory peppermint flavor. Instead of sugar-filled candy canes, substitute them for a rich peppermint tea and other sugar-free peppermint patties and fudge. With thousands of fun and exciting recipes online, we guarantee you will find the perfect sugar-free peppermint alternatives for your goodies.
Need a substitute for sugar cookies and other sugar-filled treats? Well, gingerbread tends to have less sugar, and you can create so many different things with it. From houses to cookies, the world is your oyster, and by baking it yourself, you can be in control and limit the amount of sugar that goes into it!
Do you love cheese? If yes, it’s a really good thing. A study by the Academy of General Dentistry shows that by eating cheese, you raise the pH in your mouth which helps fight back to prevent tooth decay. The high levels of protein and calcium are just an added bonus. So if you want a delicious snack, break out the cheese balls and platters.
Roasted nuts are another common holiday snack, and though almonds are not usually associated with this season, we recommend bringing them into your routine. Almonds are:
- High in protein and calcium
- Low in artificial sugars
Well, of course, we had to add veggies. Celery and carrots are easy snacks to layout, and as an added bonus, they are nature’s toothbrush. Not only are they perfect snacks when you are on the go, but they will also remove plaque and fill you with vitamins and nutrients at the same time.
During your Christmas dinner, do not shy away from the turkey. The meat is lean and full of protein and phosphorous, incredible for strengthening your teeth.
Do you have a favorite healthy holiday snack? Make sure to share it in the comments so that others can enjoy your creations!
Don’t Let Your Guard Down on Healthy Teeth Cleaning Practices
The holiday season is extremely busy. Shopping for toys and wrapping them, Christmas movie nights, and family meals add to the hustle and bustle of this wondrous time. It is easy to let our guard down and forget our normal teeth cleaning habits for a bit.
Try to set aside time in your day to recommit to your oral health, and if you have kids, theirs too. Some easy tips are to set the alarm, create friendly competitions, and make reminders on your phone. Remember to:
- Brush at least twice a day
- Come into Beautiful Smiles Dental Center for a cleaning
- Ask for a new toothbrush from Santa
Are you looking for the perfect New Year’s resolution to start a brand new year right? Why not honor a commitment to your oral health with Beautiful Smiles Dental Center? Come in for a check-up and say yes to healthy teeth in 2021; contact us today!