Protect Your Teeth From Holiday Treats

Friday, December 18th, 2015, 3:17 pm

‘Tis the season for cookies and candies and lots of holiday treats and you need to protect your teeth. In addition to being bad for your waistline all of these high sugar goodies translate to a higher risk for tooth decay.

Many people think that tooth decay happens mostly to children — everyone is susceptible to tooth decay. Some adults, especially seniors and people who take certain medications that result in “dry mouth”, are at higher risk for tooth decay.

We all have good and bad bacteria that live in our bodies. Over 700 different strains have been detected in the human mouth! The trick to maintaining a healthy body and mouth is to keep the balance of good and bad bacteria in the right proportions.

Eating and drinking foods high in carbohydrates (sugars) provide a feast for the bad bacteria in our mouths. The bacteria eat the sugars and excrete acids which soften the tooth enamel. Once enamel has been damaged, the tooth is open for tooth decay. You can protect your teeth during the holidays, and throughout the year, by following these simple steps:

  • Limit your intake of goodies to specific times. Grazing all day long means that the teeth are constantly covered in sugars and food debris.
  • Have your treats after eating a meal. Saliva is already flowing and will help to wash away debris and protect the teeth.
  • If you have something sugary and high in acid, like a soft drink, wait about 30 minutes to brush. The acids will have softened the tooth enamel and immediate brushing can cause more harm than good.
  • Enjoy the holiday parties but station yourself near the veggie tray, not the cookies. Chewing crunchy vegetables actually helps clean teeth.

These guidelines can help both children and adults protect their pearly whites during the sugar rush that accompanies the holidays. So go ahead and enjoy Grandma’s special fudge. Just remember to brush, floss and schedule your next dental hygiene appointment!

Please contact Wilbanks Smile Center in Toccoa, GA today at 706-391-8777  to schedule your visit.


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Category: cavities, Decay, Tooth Enamel

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