Now that the holiday season has arrived, chances are you’ll be invited to a festive gathering. We all know that when the food and beverage menu is created for such an event, there is little concern for the impact the items will have on everyone’s oral health. Thus, it’s up to you to take the necessary steps to protect your teeth and gums and to prevent any mishaps. As you continue reading, your Los Gatos dentist helps out by listing 5 steps you can take to fortify your oral health while enjoying the holiday fun!
#1 – Establish a Limit Beforehand
The primary threat to your dental health is oral bacteria growth. Because these microorganisms feed on leftover sugars in the mouth, it’s best to set a limit on how much you’ll indulge in the sweet delights that you’ll find at most holiday gatherings. The less sugar your teeth and gums are exposed to, the better your chances are of staving off any bacteria and plaque accumulation.
#2 – Increase Your Protein Intake
One way to decrease the amount of sugar you consume is to increase your protein intake. Not only are proteins like chicken, turkey, beef and cheese filling, but they will also help to curb any cravings for carbohydrates (foods that contain sugars).
An additional benefit is that protein helps to fortify your tooth enamel, thus contributing to a long-lasting and attractive smile.
#3 – Step Up Your Dental Care
While you should already be brushing and flossing at least two times a day, it’s especially important to do so during the holidays. The combination of the two plaque-fighting habits will help to agitate and remove any leftover food debris before it can settle on the teeth and at the gum line.
#4 – Drink More Water
Along with maintaining excellent oral hygiene, drinking more water can be quite helpful in protecting your teeth and gums. When you drink at least one glass of water after a meal, it aids in flushing the mouth of any lingering particles that could lead to tooth and gum decay.
#5 – Visit Your Dentist
If you want the ultimate peace-of-mind during the holidays, then it’s worth your while to pay your dentist a visit for a cleaning and checkup. It provides a way to catch any issues that may be developing, while also clearing away harmful bacteria and plaque that can lead to cavities, acute tooth infection or gum disease.
The bottom line is this; you don’t have to miss out on all the fun events that are customary at this time of the year. By following these holiday tooth tips, you can enjoy these special moments while remaining healthy!
About the Author
A graduate of the University of the Pacific School of Dentistry in San Francisco, Dr. Matthew Diercks has over 20 years of experience practicing dentistry. He provides comprehensive care, which ranges from IV sedation to cutting-edge root canal techniques. Dr. Diercks helps patients maintain excellent oral health throughout the holidays by providing preventive care at Los Gatos Dental Group, and he can be reached for more information through his website.