Are the Holidays the Worst Time of the Year for Your Teeth?

December 2, 2023

Filed under: Uncategorized — polarisdental @ 9:45 pm
Friends at a holiday dinner

The holidays will be here before you know it! This is such an exciting time of year, as you get to spend time with family, visit with friends, and enjoy some delicious meals together. However, you should be especially mindful when it comes to your smile this December. The holiday season may be the worst time of year for your smile, and many people end up needing restorative work in the new year. Continue reading to learn why this is as well as some tips to help you maintain the health of your smile.

Why Are the Holidays Harmful for Teeth?

There are a variety of reasons why dental health is lacking during the holidays. Here are the most prominent ones:

  • Excess Sugar: The holiday season has its fair share of sugary treats. This means that your teeth are more likely to develop cavities from additional sugar exposure. Sugar turns to acid in the mouth, softening your protective enamel. Bacteria-filled plaque then eats away at the enamel and causes decay.
  • Additional Snacking: There are many delicious meals to enjoy during the holiday season. For some holidays, there are all-day events with lots of food and leftovers. The more frequently you eat, the more problematic for your tooth enamel. Instead, it is generally better to stick to a few balanced meals daily. This gives your teeth the time to rest in between.
  • Lack of Routine: During this type of year, many people fall out of the normal routine that they are used to. This often means less healthy eating and a lack of excellent oral hygiene. If you are traveling or have lots of holiday plans, always try to stay on top of your smile!

5 Ways to Keep Up a Healthy Smile During the Holidays?

To keep your smile in good shape over the holidays, here are some steps you should be taking:

  • Maintain Excellent Oral Hygiene: Continue to brush twice and floss every day. Also, rinse with mouthwash for extra freshness.
  • Stay Hydrated: Drink plenty of water to wash away food particles and neutralize harmful acids in the mouth.
  • Eat Healthy: Save a large portion of your plate for turkey, veggies, cheese, nuts, and other foods with nutritional benefits.
  • Avoid Sugary & Acidic Foods: Wine, candy canes, and other treats should be kept to a minimum.
  • See Your Dentist: If it’s been more than six months since your last cleaning and checkup, now is the perfect time to schedule an appointment.

You don’t want to start the new year in the dental chair! By using the tips listed above, you can begin 2024 with a healthy smile!

About the Author

Dr. Kevin Lane is an experienced dentist who has been practicing for more than 20 years! He earned his dental doctorate from the University of Michigan and completed his residency program at NYU. Currently, he teaches at The Ohio State University School of Dentistry as an adjunct professor. For more information or to schedule an appointment at his practice in Lewis Center, visit his website or call (614) 888-3692.

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