Sugar, Starches, Spirits and Stress can all be less than festive to your teeth
TORONTO, ON — Dentists across Ontario hope everyone has a safe and happy holiday season and are gifting you with helpful dental tips to keep it a merry time for your mouth. Whether you’re staying in with family and friends or heading out to parties between now and New Years’, the Ontario Dental Association (ODA) wants you to enjoy the festivities while keeping these four “S”s in mind.
The holidays are a minefield of sweets that include candy canes, which aren’t just pure sugar, they can also chip and crack your teeth. Eggnog, cider, pop, cookies, chocolates and caramels are also loaded with sugar, so swish with water after drinking and eating these to wash away the residue.
Many of us love mashed potatoes, stuffing, bread and crackers, but all of these can get stuck in your teeth. They may not be sweet but these starches break down into sugars, which cause cavities.
Alcohol is no friend to your mouth. Wine is sugary and high in acid, plus, red wine can stain teeth. Champagne and beer have high carbonation, which can also erode tooth enamel and many mixed drinks have lots of sugar and carbonation in them, as well. Some people like to chew on the ice cubes in their beverages and that too, can crack your teeth.
This isn’t a fun and magical time of year for everyone and because of that, it’s important to pay attention to stress levels. Along with feeling terrible, anxiety can lead to over-indulging, loss of sleep, a sluggish immune system and teeth grinding, which causes pain and over time, can lead to tooth loss.
ODA President Dr. David Stevenson says, “Of course you can enjoy your sweet and savory delights over the holidays! Just be sure to brush twice a day, floss daily – especially after turkey dinner, and have tooth-friendly snacks like cheese, fresh veggies and nuts to balance out all the rich treats.”
About the Ontario Dental Association
The ODA has been the voluntary professional association for dentists in Ontario since 1867. Today, we represent more than 9,000, or nine in 10, dentists across the province. The ODA is Ontario’s primary source of information on oral health and the dental profession. We advocate for accessible and sustainable optimal oral health for all Ontarians by working with health-care professionals, governments, the private sector and the public. For helpful dental care tips, visit www.youroralhealth.ca.