Do you have any big holiday plans? If so, then they probably include a Thanksgiving dinner, and more holiday gatherings in December. While we love getting together with our friends and family, many of these meals are high in sugar and starch. In today’s blog, your Kansas City, MO, dentist has tips for avoiding holiday-related tooth decay.
Thanksgiving and Tooth Decay
When we sit down for our Thanksgiving and holiday meals, these will often contain sides that are high in starch, with lots of bread and potatoes in the mix. Likewise, our desserts like cobbles, cookies, pies, and cakes, are all high in sugar. Not to mention sweet teas and sodas! Sugar and starch will become attached to your teeth or trapped in between them, where harmful oral bacteria will break them down to elevate oral acidity and coat the teeth in plaque. This buildup then weakens and erodes the protective layers of your tooth enamel, a complication that could lead to tooth decay and aching smiles. The same buildup also means teeth stains and bad breath too. Which is why action should be taken to help safeguard your smiles this time of year.
Healthy Smile Habits
First, be mindful of how many starchy and sugary items are on your plate. Enjoy them in moderation, and balance your plate with healthier options that contain fruits and vegetables. Some fresh fruits and veggies, like carrots, apples, and broccoli, could help scrub away plaque and food particles as you consume them. You should also drink plenty of water with your meal, as this helps rinse your smile too, removing stray food and drink particles. Once you’re done eating, you can help by excusing yourself to floss.
During your holiday events, even if you’re out of town or traveling, you should maintain good oral hygiene habits. Start and end each day by brushing for about two minutes, using a toothbrush with soft bristles and a toothpaste that contains fluoride. We also recommend flossing every evening, as this removes what is beyond the reach of your toothbrush’s bristles. These actions help fight plaque buildup and cavities until we can see you for a professional cleaning.
Checkups and Cleanings
You should see us soon, so we can offer a checkup and cleaning before the year ends and your 2022 dental insurance benefits expire. We can identify areas of concern and address them before the new year begins, and we can clean the smile to remove all plaque and tartar buildup completely!
Contact Us To Learn More About Keeping Smiles Healthy
We would love to help you enjoy good oral health and a happy holiday. If you have any questions about protecting teeth from tooth decay, then you can reach out by contacting your Kansas City, MO, dentist, Dr. Murphy, by calling (816) 531-8000.