How to Prevent Tooth Decay This Sugary-Sweet Winter Holiday
Follow these simple steps for a cavity-free smile.
Ah, the winter holidays. It’s the most wonderful time of the year — but it also tends to be the most sugar-filled, as well.
We all know that consuming too much sugar puts our oral health at risk. As sweet as snickerdoodle, candy canes or apple pie may be, these treats aren’t very dental-friendly - but the good news is, we can take certain steps to ensure we’re doing all we can to protect our smiles from any damage, while still being able to enjoy the odd sweet :).
That being said, our dentist in Guelph would like to share four key steps for you to follow this winter season to help you keep tooth decay at bay:
Limit your number of sweet treat exposures
Here are the facts: if your smile is constantly being exposed to sweets or desserts (not limited to just food - beverages too!), your teeth are then constantly being introduced to enamel-destroying bacterial acids.
This is why it’s important to try your best to limit the number of sweets you consume/ number of times you consume them throughout the day, or try to save your treats to eat along with meals instead of eating them as frequent snacks in-between.
Brush (and preferably also floss) your teeth after sugary consumption
Try to head to the sink to brush and floss your teeth whenever you can after consuming any candies or desserts. The longer you go without brushing after eating or drinking anything high in sugar, the longer your teeth are exposed to the bacterial acids known for attacking the enamel - leading to tooth decay and ultimately, cavities.
(Oh, and if you haven’t had a check-up and cleaning at our Guelph dental clinic for over 6 months, it’s time to schedule another!)
Chew sugar-free gum
Chewing sugarless gum increases saliva production, which helps to bring down the level of acidity in the mouth and wash away particles of food. This is a smart and convenient option if brushing and flossing isn't a practical solution at the time. Popping a piece of gum after you enjoy a yummy confection will help to protect your precious teeth.
- Chew some sugar-free gum in between meals and snacks
Did you know? Chewing sugarless gum boosts the saliva production in our mouths, which actually helps to lower the level of acidity present while also washing away particles of food from the surfaces of the teeth. But of course, you have to make sure what you’re chewing is actually sugar-free!
Chewing sugarless gum can be a smart and convenient option if brushing and flossing isn't a practical solution for you at the time. Simply popping a piece in your mouth after enjoying a sweet delicacy can help to protect your precious teeth from damage - especially if this habit is practiced over time, or with gum containing Xylitol (a sugar substitute that has actually been shown to prevent cavities!)
Get in that H2O (and swish it around!)
Drinking water regularly will also play a role in helping to wash away food debris from the teeth, and will also promote saliva production - which again can do a lot of good for our smiles after we’ve indulged in any sugary desserts, candies or beverages. (Besides, keeping hydrated is encouraged for our overall health, as well - so you’ve really got nothing to lose by upping your water intake).
Make it through the winter holidays 2020-21 cavity-free
You’ve made it through everything else this past crazy year, anyway! By following the four guidelines above, you can rest assured you’re doing everything you can to keep your teeth safe over the sweet and chilly holidays.
Our friendly Guelph dentist and team is always here to answer your questions about oral health. Book a consultation at Dr. Dana Coman Family Dentistry today - we’d love to see you and your smile. :)
Dr. Coman Dentistry
85 Norfolk Street, Suite 308
Guelph, ON N1H 4J4