Besides the bright decorations and thoughtful gifts, the holiday season wouldn’t be the same without amazing food. Unfortunately, if you aren’t careful, the foods and drinks you consume can leave a lasting mark on your smile. Thankfully, you can still enjoy your favorite snacks and meals without compromising your dental health. Your dentist in Bellingham has a list of the best and worst foods for your smile during the holidays.
5 Holiday Foods to Avoid
There are a few holiday treats that can increase your risk of oral health issues, like tooth decay and gum disease, such as:
- Candy Canes: Candy canes contain sugar, which will bathe your teeth in an acidic plaque when you suck on them, which can heighten your risk of cavities. Chewing on candy canes won’t lessen the threat. In fact, biting and chewing them increases the potential of tooth fractures.
- Ice Cubes: Chewing on ice can chip your enamel, leading to a dental emergency. If you have a bad habit of crunching on ice, it’s best to leave them out of your drink.
- Egg Nog: The holiday favorite has a high sugar content, which is bad for your enamel. It’s best to choose one that’s sugar-free and skip the alcohol.
- Carbonated Beverages: The fizzy drink will slowly erode your enamel, making them prone to sensitivity and decay. Although carbonated drinks taste great, your dentist recommends always choosing water.
- Chocolate: As with most candies, chocolate can raise your risk for cavities. Milk chocolate contains more sugar than those that are dark.
If you can’t skip the above foods and drinks altogether, it’ best to only have them in moderation.
5 Best Holiday Foods
There are many tasty foods that will promote a healthy smile and waistline during the holidays, including:
- Cheese: Low-fat cheese balances the pH level in your mouth to make it less acidic. It also contains calcium to keep your enamel strong.
- Nuts: Nuts are packed with nutrients and increase saliva production to keep your smile healthy.
- Veggies: Crunchy vegetables act as a toothbrush to scrub your teeth in between brushing. They also contain plenty of vitamins and nutrients to support your dental health.
- Turkey: Turkey is a great source of protein, calcium, and phosphorus, which are necessary for strong, healthy teeth.
- Sugar-Free Gum: After you’ve finished your meal or snack, grab a piece of sugarless gum to help cleanse your mouth until you can get to your toothbrush.
With a few simple changes, you can enjoy the holidays while also promoting a healthy smile. Besides a balanced diet, don’t forget to maintain your oral hygiene at home and see your dentist twice a year.
About Dr. Ronald A. Moreno
If you need a cleaning and checkup, don’t Google, “dentist near me.” Instead, choose the trusted choice in the community. Dr. Moreno has provided exceptional dental care since 1995. He is an active member of various dental organizations, including the American Dental Association. Dr. Moreno strives for perfection when creating healthy, beautiful smiles. If you need a preventive visit before the holidays, contact our office today for an appointment.