Thanksgiving is a time for family, old and new friends, and loved ones to get together and enjoy a hearty meal. It is also a holiday that can be dangerous for your dental health. This is because a lot of what we eat during this time can be hazardous to our dental health. This can include stuffing, sugary treats like pies and cookies, cranberry sauce, and dinner rolls. These items are all carbohydrate rich, sugary foods. This can really do some damage to your oral health, but there are some simple ways you can help combat cavities while still enjoying Grandma’s pumpkin or pecan pie.
Thanksgiving Day Dental Health Tips
-Eat a Balanced Meal. Eat a meal with a mix of carbohydrates, proteins, and vegetables. This helps to counteract some of the acids produced when sugars and bacteria in the mouth come together. Also, some of the harder vegetables like raw carrots can act as a cleaning aid in your mouth as you chew. Hard vegetables can remove some of the excess food that sticks to your teeth.
-Limit your sweet, sticky foods. These can include pies, cookies, and stuffing. These foods tend to stick in the grooves of teeth and lodge between teeth, meaning they stay in the mouth longer and increase tooth decay risk.
-Do not Graze!! This might be one of the most important ones listed here. Not only will you allow these bad food items to stay in your mouth longer but you will not allow your saliva to neutralize. The acidic levels in the saliva will remain all day, allowing bacteria to destroy surface enamel without interference.It’s easy to spend all day just walking around a party eating snacks and drinking, but every time you put something into your mouth, it creates acids. Spend some time NOT eating on Thanksgiving day to cut down on the buildup of cavity causing foods.
-Come Prepared. If you are going away from home for your thanksgiving dinner bring a travel toothbrush with you even if you are just away for the day. If you are unable to brush your teeth immediately after eating for some reason? Rinse your mouth out with water to remove as much debris and neutralize the acid as much as possible. Also, bring some floss and floss following your meal as well.
Happy Thanksgiving to All!!
By following these simple holiday dental care tips, you can keep your teeth and gums healthy while still enjoying your Thanksgiving favorites.