If you're racing through the snow to get to an emergency dental appointment, it's hard to be cheerful and healthy at this time of the year. And after a long holiday season, no one wants to begin their New Year's Resolutions with the words "Get Cavities Filled." How do you get through the most delicious of seasons with your enamel and fillings intact?
Normal people might consider candies and sweets to be bad, but we're not Scrooges around here! It's natural to want to indulge in a few treats over the holiday season, and we have some suggestions on how to do so guilt-free. But first and foremost, certain sweets are unquestionably more wicked than sweet. Which ones are more appropriate for use as table decorations rather than desserts?
If you've ever had a chipped or broken tooth as a result of inadvertently biting down on a piece of candy that was much harder than you anticipated, you know that extreme care should be used. We take our time with candy canes, allowing them to melt gently in our mouths as a result of this tendency. The disadvantage of this method, of course, is that we are now progressively bathing our teeth in sugar, which encourages the formation of plaque and cavity-causing germs.
Crushable sweets such as candy canes, peppermints, and other hard candies are possibly harmful to your teeth when you chew them, and they are certainly harmful if you allow them to dissolve slowly in your mouth.
Gumdrops that are glistening and vibrant in color. They are one of the most adorable ways to decorate for the holidays, whether they are used to roof a gingerbread home, trim a gumdrop tree, or just sitting in a bowl. And when we say "sweet," we mean it in the literal sense of the word. The majority of gumdrops are composed mostly of corn syrup and sugar, which are then rolled in more sugar.
However, the fact that they are high in sugar is not the only issue. A sticky substance that adheres between our teeth and around our gums, this is sugar in an extra-gummy form.
Despite the fact that they are packaged in attractive ribboned boxes, these incredibly sticky meals are not a treat for your teeth.
Chewy sweets not only attach to enamel, but they also stick to fillings, crowns (especially temporary crowns), orthodontic wires, and brackets. They are particularly bad for fillings. The last thing anybody wants is an unplanned dental or orthodontic appointment because their dental work has been damaged or displaced!
No Christmas decoration is more festive than a gingerbread house, which is made of chewy, sticky gingerbread and topped with hard sugar frosting, candy canes, and peppermints. Wonderful for your home's interior design, but not so great for your oral health. If you're in the mood for something hot, eat one gingerbread guy and leave your architectural masterpiece alone.
If you're looking for a reason to say no to fruitcake, here's a good one: most fruitcake is bad for your teeth. Candied fruit is, well, candied, while dried fruit is sweet, sticky, and chewy in texture and consistency. Of course, there are delectable outliers, but even a delectable fruitcake has a significant amount of sugar.
This wasn't a very cheerful list, to put it mildly. Here are some tips to help you enjoy your sweets in the healthiest manner possible as a small Christmas present from me to you.
Take the time to choose the best holiday treats for yourself, just as you would while shopping for the perfect gifts for your family and friends. If you are concerned about cavities, have a temporary crown, wear braces, have broken a tooth in the past, or are just generally concerned about your oral health, avoid sticky, hard, and highly sweet desserts as much as possible.
When it comes to your holiday hosts, what can you take with a thankful (and relieved) smile? If you make it dark chocolate, you'll really obtain nutritional benefits such as magnesium and antioxidants, which should alleviate any concerns about eating soft chocolate on occasion. Cakes, cupcakes, cookies, and pies are all created with a lot of sugar, but hey, it is the holiday season, so why not indulge? Just make sure to follow our next few suggestions to avoid feeling guilty about that slice of cheesecake.
Saliva has a purpose other than just keeping our mouths from becoming dry. It also aids in the prevention of cavities by washing away food particles and neutralizing the acids produced by food and bacteria, both of which are known to cause enamel damage.
If you eat dessert with your dinner, you will benefit from increased saliva production throughout the meal. As a result of frequent snacking throughout the day, this acid-neutralizing capacity is significantly diminished.
After a meal or snack, particularly a sweet one, rinsing your mouth with water helps wash away the sticky sugars and carbohydrates, which oral bacteria turn into acids.
Brushing your teeth immediately after eating is always a good idea—well, nearly usually. For example, if you've been eating acidic foods such as citrus or colas, the acids in the meal may have weakened your enamel just enough to cause some possible enamel damage if you scour your teeth just after eating it. We often suggest waiting around 30 minutes before brushing to provide your enamel a chance to recuperate.
Every mouth, on the other hand, is unique. In the event that you have braces, if you have a tendency to have food trapped between your teeth or in your dental work, or if you have any other concerns, consult Dr. Marianne Cohan about the optimum times and techniques for holiday brushing.
You don't want to waste time hoping against hope that we will be able to accommodate your appointment at our Las Vegas dentist near you to treat a cavity or a damaged tooth. If you plan on indulging in seasonal goodies, write down your list of desserts and double-check it, and make a point of brushing and flossing more often as a result. Give yourself these two presents, and you'll be welcoming the New Year with a beautiful, healthy smile with Summerlin Dental Solutions. Sweet!