The most wonderful time of the year is almost upon us. Yes, Christmas brings joy and happiness to all who celebrate it. It’s a very busy time of the year and our dental health may slip down on the list of priorities but don’t worry, here are twelve tips to ensure you maintain a good Oral Health routine this Christmas.
- Don’t break the brushing habits;
Remember to brush twice a day for two minutes with a fluoride toothpaste (aged 2+). Don’t take a break from brushing your teeth, even for a single day. You should brush twice a day and you could even add an extra brushing session during the day if you’ve really gone to town on the chocolate & mince pies.
- Keep the alcohol to a minimum;
Go easy on the alcohol and avoid cigarettes at all costs – by all means, enjoy a drink or two, but don’t get carried away, since excess alcohol increases the risk of gum disease. Alcohol dehydrates you, giving carcinogens free reign to wreak havoc on your oral health. Smoking also dries out your mouth and it’s a leading cause of oral cancer.
- Watch the Sugar;
Enjoy sugar..in moderation! In the risk of sounding like the Grinch, try and be mindful of the amount of sugar you consume this Christmas. You should absolutely get into the spirit and enjoy some of your favourite treats, but don’t go overboard.
- Opt for fresh fruit and vegetables;
For a healthy body and mind over the festive period, the role of fruit and vegetables is vital as they provide the necessary vitamins and minerals for good, healthy teeth.
- Don’t give the gift of sweets;
Try and find some exciting gifts for children other than sweets.
- Don’t chew hard foods;
Candy canes, nuts, toffees, dried fruit and more. There’s no escaping the temptation of hard foods that wreak havoc on our teeth. If you crave a Christmas treat, opt for softer varieties. Also, don’t use your teeth as a tool to open beer bottles or other objects. This can cause a lot of damage, and you may even chip or lose your tooth.
- Don’t use your teeth as a bottle opener;
Over the Christmas, many people tend to crack/break a tooth due to trauma by alcohol lid opening or using your teeth to open kids toys and presents. Please don’t use your teeth to open things.
- Book a pre-Christmas dental visit if possible;
If you are due a check-up, why not try and arrange it before the festive period as this can prevent underlying/arising dental problems and you don’t want to be stuck when dentists close over the Christmas.
- Be mindful of consuming acidic foods and drinks;
Acidic drinks (inc: Red Wine, Lemon Juice, Orange Juice etc..) can weaken your tooth enamel. It’s a good idea to use a straw when drinking acidic beverages, to guard your teeth. Drinking water can also help to wash away bacteria, by neutralising acids in your mouth. Don’t brush your teeth straight after consuming acidic products – wait at least 30 minutes. This way, you avoid brushing the acid-weakened enamel away and guard against more serious problems.
- Don’t forget to drink water;
This one needs no explaining. Try and stay hydrated over the Christmas and in between the hot drinks, don’t forget to drink water. Water helps clean food and debris from your teeth and promotes saliva production, which is essential for good Oral health.
- Offer healthy snacks;
Especially when feeding children over the holidays, offer healthy snacks to eat. The internet is full of festive Christmas treat ideas to make as a family.
- Upgrade your toothbrush;
If you need a reminder, here it is. You need to change your toothbrush every 3 months so why not upgrade just in time for Christmas. If you use electric and need to, change the head on this too.
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