During the holidays, the days are full of snacks, and your family's celebrations may swing you out of your healthy dental routine. In spite of these challenges, it is possible to keep your teeth healthy during the holidays. Here are some tips to help:
1. Temper sweets with calcium-filled foods and drinks
Sugar-laden sweets leave a sticky residue on your teeth. This is the perfect snack for bacteria, and as the bacteria eats the sugar off your teeth, it produces acids. These wear away your enamel, causing cavities.
However, you can fight against this process by pairing your sugary snacks with a glass of milk. The liquid, along with your saliva, helps to wash away the layer of sugar and bacteria from your teeth, and the calcium works to strengthen your enamel.
Similarly, if you pair your holiday teeth-staining wine with calcium-filled cheese, the calcium in the cheese will help to counteract potential damage and stains caused by the wine.
2. Explore convenient alternatives to brushing
Ideally, you should always brush your teeth after meals or snacks, but that isn't always possible. This is especially true during the holidays where you may be away from your home at office parties or at friends' or relatives' homes.
When you know you won't be able to brush, plan alternatives. For example, carry a pack of sugar-free gum, and chew a piece after snacking. Chewing gum increases your saliva production, washing away plaque.
Alternatively, carry small bags of crunchy vegetables -- chewing them also increases your saliva production, and the "sharp" edges of the chewed vegetables agitate against your teeth, virtually "brushing" away the plaque.
3. Stick to dental routines
Although it can be hard during the holidays, try to stick to your dental routines as much as possible. If you are travelling with children, make sure to leave time in the evening and morning to do your usual brushing and flossing routine.
Make adjustments as necessary. For example, if you are allowing the kids to stay up late watching a holiday film, let them snack during the beginning of the film, and then, take a break in the middle of the film and have them brush. That way, if they fall asleep while watching it, you don't have to worry about missing brushing.
4. Research emergency dentists in holiday destinations
If you are travelling during the holidays, make sure to have contact info for emergency dentists in the places to which you are travelling. If someone chips a tooth on a piece of candy, gets a toothache from gooey sweets or has another dental issue, you conveniently have a phone number for a dentist near you, and that allows you to resolve the situation as quickly as possible.
If you have specific questions about your dental routine, talk with a dentist from a clinic like Dr David Young & Associates Dental Surgeons.
Ever since I was a little girl, I have loved stories about the past. Whether the stories were about horses, wars, exploration or even dentistry, I loved to hear them. I find that knowing the history of something helps it to make sense and feel approachable. I know that some people have dental anxiety, and I too have suffered, but I also feel like the more you know about dental work and its history, the easier it is. This blog is dedicated to exploring the history of dentistry – What did ancient people use for fillings? How did early dentists numb their patients? Who was the first dentist? Those are just some of the questions I plan to answer here. Ready? Okay, let's dive into the history of dentistry together!