Five Holiday Treats that May Lead to Ho-Ho-Holes in Your Teeth
Delta Dental advises consumers to practice moderation and eat smart during the holiday season.
OAK BROOK, Ill. (December 5, 2013) - The old adage "too much of a good thing" is never more true than during the holiday season. There tends to be an overabundance of everything—especially sweet treats. While it's impractical to suggest complete avoidance of holiday goodies, Delta Dental encourages moderation to make sure you receive the gift of great oral health!
Here are five common treats to limit during the holidays:
Cookies, candy and sweet holiday beverages all have at least one main ingredient in common: sugar, whose negative effect on teeth has been well-documented. Why is sugar so bad for your teeth? It mixes with bacteria in the sticky plaque that constantly forms on teeth to produce acid that attacks tooth enamel. The stickiness of that plaque keeps those harmful acids against the teeth, which contributes to tooth decay.
"No one wants to be the Grinch about enjoying all the special experiences of the holidays, particularly the tasty treats that are usually around," said Dr. Bill Kohn, DDS, Delta Dental Plans Association's vice president for dental science and policy. "Try to enjoy in moderation, and if you find yourself overindulging, perhaps spend some extra time flossing and brushing at least twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste."
When you do indulge your holiday sweet tooth, it's best to enjoy goodies as part of, or immediately following a meal, rather than snacking on treats throughout the day. Another good tip to is to stick to one small serving of your favorite drink or snack and to follow up by swishing around some water, chew sugar-free gum, or brush soon after finishing to wash away some of the sticky sugar residue.
1USDA. Basic Food Report: Eggnog. http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/dairy-and-egg-products/55/2