The holidays are the perfect time for you to get together with family, laugh with old friends, and try to stay warm in the mere beginnings of our frightful Maryland winters. These are the days of hot cocoa (with marshmallows and whipped cream, of course), cookie trays, fruitcakes, stocking stuffers, and every other delicious treat you can think of. While you might be thrilled about the end of December, your teeth are probably feeling otherwise.
After all, the busyness of the holidays can leave us feeling out of whack, and our dental habits are no exception. The excess of sugar and the decrease of normal dental routines can definitely be trying on our teeth. Luckily for you, our dentists Dr. Olson, Dr. Morris, and Dr. Oh, along with our entire dental clinic staff, are here to provide you with some tips this holiday season. Follow these pieces of advice next time you’re looking at some enticing pieces of candy, and contact our dental office today!
Make a list (and check it twice).
The holidays are one of the busiest traveling times of the year, and it’s fairly likely that you might be amongst the throngs in airports and highways. We all know how common it is to accidentally forget something in the rush of getting ready to travel. In some instances, forgetting that hair dryer or extra shirt would be an inconvenience, but you can certainly do without. In the event of a toothbrush and other dental care items, they are much more essential to your health—and shouldn’t be forgotten.
Take a rule out of the man in the red hat’s book and make yourself a list of everything that you need to bring for the holidays. Start by going through your daily routine in your head, and write down each item you rely upon. Next, think of the holiday itself. Did you promise to bring your famous sufganiyot? Are you supplying the mac ‘n’ cheese this year? How many presents are you giving out on your holiday? Consider all these elements, and also record them on your list. This will make packing so much easier, as you can check off everything as you go.
Those dental health necessities, such as your toothbrush, toothpaste, and floss, might not seem all that important, but increasing your dental consciousness during the holidays is crucial. We often are eating more—particularly more sugary foods—and the plaque buildup can be highly detrimental to our teeth and health as a whole. Make your packing list, and double check that you have everything you need to ensure your dental health over the holidays.
Be conscientious of what you’re eating.
Your Frederick and Germantown dentists wholeheartedly want you to enjoy the holidays, and know that much of this involves eating sweets. It’s not every day you get to eat the peanut butter cookies with the Hershey kiss on top, or enjoy a peppermint latte. However, one of the best things you can do is be conscientious of what you’re consuming, and keep moderation in mind.
People aren’t really supposed to have more than 25 grams of added sugar a day, and it’s incredibly easy for this fact to be pushed aside during the holidays. For example, a hot chocolate has an average of 24 grams of sugar. A cup of cocoa plus other sweets throughout the day can easily double—if not triple—the amount of sugar you’re consuming. You don’t need to completely ignore your cravings (unless, of course, you have allergies that could pose a health risk). However, you should keep in mind what you’re eating and the impact it can have on your teeth and gums. This ultimately leads to implications for your overall health as well.
Keep up with flossing.
Frosty had a great look, but his smile was something else. If you don’t want your smile to look like it was constructed with charcoal, floss each and every day. We often forget to floss, or brush the importance of it aside, but many dentists agree that flossing is actually more important than brushing. This doesn’t mean you should throw your toothbrush into an open fire, because the two health practices in tandem are essential for your health. It simply goes to show that flossing should never be forgotten, especially during the holidays.
Flossing, as we’ve talked about in previous blogs, is so critical for your dental health because it removes plaque from areas that a toothbrush alone cannot reach. Add it to your packing list, and even if you can’t get to it every day like normal during this busy time, make a conscious effort to try. Your teeth will absolutely thank you (and your dentist, too!)
The holidays come and leave us again before we know it, and it’s so easy to lose track of our normal routines during this time. But with the sugary sweets and beverages and festive dessert trays, it’s more important than ever to keep track of your dental health. And as always, making an appointment with Germantown’s Top Rated Local® dentists is one of the best things you can do to keep up on your dental health habits! Schedule an appointment with our dental clinic today for the best in cosmetic dentistry, dental cleanings, dental implants, and so much more. Our team has served countless people in the Germantown and Frederick areas, and we would be honored to work with you—contact us now to get started!