Don’t Let The Holidays Steal Your Smile [BLOG]

If you’re like most people, the next several weeks are a blur of sugary treats because of Christmas and New Year’s celebrations.
But fortunately, you have Dr. Hanson and our team at Oregon Smile Care Center to keep your healthy smile intact this year. Today, we’re giving you some tips for protecting your healthy, beautiful smile from holiday dangers like tooth decay and gum disease.

Holiday Tips For Your Teeth!

You can protect your mouth from tooth decay and gum disease by keeping these helpful tips in mind while you’re busy celebrating this holiday season.
Tip #1 – Keep Your Body Healthy & Your Mouth Clean With Water
You might be thinking that we’re going to tell you to rush to the nearest bathroom after every holiday meal and treat to clean your teeth. But it may come as a surprise to know that you actually shouldn’t brush your teeth right after you eat.
The reason has to do with the acidity level of your food and drinks. The acids can coat your tooth enamel anywhere from 30-45 minutes after you consume something, so scrubbing your teeth with a toothbrush is only going to work those acids in even deeper.
We suggest that you keep a little extra water around throughout the holidays so you can rinse your mouth out in between your normal brushing and flossing. This will help wash away acids, as well as tiny food particles and sugars left behind after you eat or drink.
Tip #2 – Use Proper Tools Instead Of Teeth This Season
Opening presents and getting items out of their packages can be tricky these days. Whether you’re too impatient to try on that new sweater, or your child is begging to release their new toy from the confines of its box, it can be tempting to use your teeth to rip off tags and other plastic ties.
But keeping scissors handy will help you avoid the potential pitfalls that using your teeth as tools can cause. Your teeth were made to chew and tear food, not hard plastic items you find in many packages.
Tip #3 – Be Careful And Avoid Candy Canes
While it may seem like a humbug to do so, you should try to avoid candy canes during the holidays. All candy is loaded with sugar that can cause cavities, but hard candy like candy canes can also damage your tooth enamel. Crunching them up can wear your teeth, or even crack and break them if you’re not careful. The tiny sugary bits can also be sharp and poke at the soft tissues inside your mouth, as well.
Tip #4 – Skip Sticky Candy & Dessert Toppings
Holiday candy and desserts that contain sticky substances like toffee, taffy, or caramel can spell disaster for your dental health. That’s because they live up to their stickiness and overstay their welcome in your mouth, giving bacteria more time to feed on sugar and cause tooth decay. Stay away from anything sticky this holiday season to keep your teeth and gums free from sweet food particles.
Tip #5 – Keep Up With Daily Oral Care
This is one of the busiest travel seasons of the year. But even staying home for the holidays doesn’t mean your schedule isn’t disrupted by the festivities.
Because of that, daily oral care can be more challenging to keep up with. However, there’s no time of the year that’s quite as tough on your teeth like the holidays. So remembering to brush and floss everyday is more important than ever.
Think about your normal routine and how your schedule or surroundings might change this season. This will help you plan effective ways to remind yourself to keep up with healthy dental habits all season long.

Make An Appointment For The New Year!

Along with our tips for the keeping your teeth and gums healthy throughout the holiday season, we also want to remind you to start the year off right. Schedule your first dental cleaning and exam of 2018 at Oregon Smile Care Center.
Dr. Hanson and our skilled team are here and ready to help you achieve all your smile goals for the new year. We can make sure you’re safe from tooth decay and gum disease, and then we can kick your smile up a notch with cosmetic dentistry!
Put your healthy, beautiful smile in our hands! Call our Salem, OR dental office today at 503-837-2718 or fill out our online form to schedule an appointment.

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