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The Effects of Christmas Treats on Your Teeth and how to find a dentist near me to help!



Christmas Candy Canes

Many people tend to indulge themselves a little more than usual over the Christmas period, but it isn’t just your waistline or general health that can take a hit at this time of year. As well as the obvious sugary foods and drinks that often accompany the festive season, there are also some hidden dangers to our oral health that you might not be as aware of.

It’s common knowledge that confectionery, alongside other sugary foods that we tend to eat in larger quantities than normal during the festive period, are not great for our teeth, but they are not the only things we need to worry about. There are plenty of hidden dangers too, which can have big consequences for our oral health if we don’t manage them properly.

Here are top four dangers for teeth at this time of year:

  1. Festive speciality drinks can contain shockingly high levels of sugar. Some Mint Hot Chocolate drinks contains around 50g of sugar in every 330ml cup, which is about 12 heaped tea spoons of sugar-  the same as 20 cookies!

  2. Even diet fizzy drinks can damage your teeth. They might not contain sugar, but many artificial sweeteners are acidic, which can cause tooth enamel erosion. The same unfortunately goes for prosecco, which contains sugar, alcohol and is very acidic – a real triple threat to your teeth.

  3. Overbrushing your teeth can do more harm than good. Brushing your teeth too hard or for too long can irritate the gums and even start to wear away at your teeth, especially if you use a harsh toothpaste.

  4. Grazing at food little and often during the Christmas period can seriously affect your teeth too. It’s not as much the volume of sugary foods as the number of times you expose your teeth to them that can cause dental issues. Bacteria in the mouth produce acids each time you eat – so lots of little snacks mean lots of teeth attacks!

There are several other ways in which your teeth could be damaged this Christmas if you don’t take some precautions. These include:

  • Broken or cracked teeth from eating foods you might not normally eat, such as some varieties of nuts

  • Christmas toffees have been known to pull out fillings, crowns or other restorative dental measures

  • Crushing ice cubes with your teeth can also cause breakages or cracks

By keeping away from these dangers and making sure you keep up a good dental hygiene routine over Christmas and not forgetting to regularly brush and floss your teeth, you are giving yourself the best chance of leaving no lasting damage.

We see patients every day who have suffered from serious tooth decay or advanced gum disease (periodontitis) and, if the early signs are caught and treated appropriately, it can prevent tooth loss and damage to the jaw. Practicing good oral hygiene is vitally important this festive season, and we would encourage anyone who is worried about their teeth or sees blood when they brush, to visit their dentist in the New Year for a check-up at a dentist near me.

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