Keeping those pearly whites in tip top condition is important all year round, but at Christmas, we really like to look our best, even when temptation is at its greatest. So what are the key dangers facing our teeth and what are the all important tips for keeping a healthy smile over Christmas this year?
Moderation is probably the answer to everything. Christmas is the time of year when we get more party invites and with that comes all the accompanying danger of excess food and drink. No one is going to tell you not to have that Christmas pudding or brandy, but don't completely overdo it. Plenty of our festive offerings are in fact quite healthy. The Christmas dinner has turkey which is excellent for protein, and lots of vegetables. Nuts are great for a healthy smile (just make sure you use a nutcracker to open them). Mix it up and retain some balance in your diet over this tempting period.
You probably know that alcohol is not great for teeth. But apart from that, the downside to that extra Christmas tipple is that it often leads to snacking. In addition, finishing off the night with a fizzy drink, whether you brush your teeth afterwards or not, is harmful, so either ensure you switch to milk, or have some cheese at the end of the night as both of these dairy products have counteractive effects.
Timing is often more important than the food or drink you consume. What makes the Christmas season dangerous for your teeth is that we just don't stop. On Christmas Day and Boxing Day particularly, most of us start the morning nibbling and continue throughout the whole day, evening and night. Make sure you give your teeth a break and don't snack all day long.
Oral routines are there to protect your teeth - that is why we have them. But during the Christmas period, our routine tends to go out of the window as we tend to go to bed later. So a top tip is to never forget to take your toothbrush with you if you are staying away from home for the night, and no matter what time you do arrive home after a festive night out, make sure you give those teeth a thorough brush before collapsing into bed.
Dried fruit in the form of raisins, sultanas, dates and cranberries are plentiful in the festive season. In the context of overall health, they are nutritional and undoubtedly preferable to sweets, chocolate and cakes. The downside though is that they are not so good for your teeth. That is because natural sugars are still sugar! Avoid eating too many of them and certainly not before bedtime.
Christmas is a time to celebrate and enjoy yourself. In order to keep that healthy smile throughout the holidays all you need to do is make sure you moderate those drinks and snacks and keep to your usual teeth - cleaning regime.
If you have any concerns about your smile and would like a consultation please give us a call on 0161 622 0987 or visit us at Oldham Orthodontics.