Everyone is encouraged to eat, drink and be merry during the holiday season, and indulge in your favorite treats while spending time with your family. Unfortunately, celebrating the holidays can excessively damage your teeth. Here are a few traditional holiday treats that you might want to stay away from this season to avoid cavities.
The worst part about hard candy is how long it remains in your mouth. The sugar slowly dissolves and lingers in each crevasse of your teeth. The sugar will settle around your gum line and eventually transform to acids that can break down your enamel. This goes for all hard candies and even caramel chews which stick to your teeth all day. If this is your favorite thing about the holidays, make sure that you drink water to rinse the extra sugar or brush your teeth after enjoying your favorite drink or candy.
Warm Holiday Drinks
Most people use the holidays as an excuse to drink with their friends, family and coworkers who usually are the ones leading you to drink in the first place. Sharing a holiday drink like eggnog, hot cider or hot chocolate seems like a festive way to celebrate, but these drinks are so high in sugar they may not be worth it. Fortunately, there are sugar free options for most, which you can buy at the grocery store, but at a party or a bar you may not get so lucky.
Sugar Coated Popcorn
Nothing says “Happy Holidays” like a giant tin of popcorn with all different coatings – caramel, white chocolate, peppermint and even regular buttered. Unflavored, air popped popcorn has virtually no effect on your teeth, but when a coat of sugar is added to the mix you may want to rethink your choice of snack. Most of us have experienced at least once what it’s like to finish an entire section of the popcorn tin in one sitting, but this is a mistake you will be paying for at the dentist next year. Not to mention the kernels that get stuck in your gum line causing damage and recession. If you insist on eating sugar coated popcorn, consider getting a water pik to clean out the kernels and sugar from your teeth.
Eating during the holidays is a mandatory form of celebration for most of us, but indulging in the wrong things will cause serious tooth pain and cavities later on. Choose a healthier, less sugary snack like gingerbread cookies or other naturally flavored treats. If you or someone you know is in need for a cavity filling before the holiday season kicks in, contact Greenspoint Dental in Houston, Texas to set up an appointment. We will help you prepare your teeth to fight against sugar overload and tooth decay this delicious season.