Taking care of your teeth and gums may not be at the top of your Christmas priority list, with only a few days left until the celebration. However, it is more necessary than you think to take some additional precautions to protect your teeth throughout the Christmas season due to the numerous things that may go wrong with your smile.
It’s okay to indulge a little bit during the holidays; no one will hold it against you. However, you can take some simple steps to protect your teeth and keep your grin bright and healthy without having to schedule an emergency dentist visit.
Keep reading to learn how you might be damaging your teeth this holiday season and the simple steps you can take to protect your beautiful smile.
Nobody here has ever spent Christmas Eve furiously wrapping presents, battling a roll of wrapping paper, and pulling off pieces of sticky tape with their teeth. But did you realize that doing so might harm your teeth and gums?
Your teeth are often damaged if you use them on sticky tape. When you rip the tape, you exert stress on the edges of your teeth, which can cause them to weaken or break or, in the worst case, dislodge a crown or veneer. If you want to avoid stress, consider purchasing a tape dispenser.
Snacking and an endless supply of holiday snacks are practically inseparable parts of the Christmas experience. It’s quite simple to find yourself in a state of near-constant grazing! Constant sugar consumption, however, can slowly but surely destroy your teeth and gums without your ever noticing it.
It’s not how much sugar you eat but how often that does harm to your teeth, contrary to popular belief. The bacteria in your mouth release acids that can eat away at your teeth every time you consume something sweet. Snacking all the time increases the risk of tooth decay since the teeth produce this acid continuously.
What is the suggested course of action? If you have a lot of candy on hand, eating it all at once instead of chewing it throughout the day is best. Go ahead and finish up your candy supply in one sitting.
Toffees and Crunchy Candy
Everyone loves a toffee penny. Be careful if you’ve had recent dental work done, like fillings or veneers, and you’re eager to snack on those giant boxes of candy around the holidays. They truly have the ability to loosen or even completely remove fillings, crowns, bridges, and veneers from teeth. If you really must indulge in anything sweet, try to avoid hard, crunchy toffees and instead choose a soft, melting chocolate or truffle.
It’s never a good idea to use your teeth to crack nuts, yet you’d be surprised at how many people still do it. Patients who have tried to break nuts with their teeth throughout the holidays continue to visit our office in January. The injury you can do can be as bad as breaking a tooth, which is, to say the very least painful and, of course, hard to fix.
Using a nutcracker is a must every time.
It’s likely that with all the drinks you plan on drinking, you’ll go through quite a bit of ice during the course of the Christmas season. Those with fillings or crowns on their teeth are more at risk for cracks and breaks from chewing on ice. Also, if you have poor oral hygiene, you should probably avoid putting ice in your drink and go for a cold glass instead.
Using One’s Teeth as Bottle Openers
It’s a bad idea to crack nuts with your teeth, and it’s an even worse idea to open bottles with your gnashers, yet once the drinks start flowing, a lot of people find themselves doing both of these things regardless. When you use your teeth to open bottles, you risk damaging your gums and teeth. It’s best not to put your guests in this position, so stock up on bottle openers to prevent having to rush anyone to the dentist in the middle of the party.
Ignoring Regular Dental Care
A lot of work has to be done during the holidays. The same goes for taking off your makeup: with everything else going on in your life, brushing your teeth may be the first thing to do, especially if you’re going out for the evening. If you forget once or twice, it probably won’t ruin your smile. A problem arises if this starts happening frequently. If you don’t brush your teeth before night, cavities, plaque, bad breath, and gum disease can quickly develop, especially around the holidays. If you want to avoid forgetting to brush your teeth, you should aim to spend two minutes doing so twice a day. Ideally, you should brush right when you wake up and before you sleep.