The holiday season is here! As you shop for the perfect gifts and attend gatherings with your loved ones, you’ll have plenty of delicious foods to tempt your taste buds. Many seasonal favorites can add inches to your waistline, but they can also damage your teeth. You don’t want to hear bad news next time you see your dentist. Here are 5 popular foods you should avoid to safeguard your pearly whites.
1. Sugar Cookies
If you enjoy baking sugar cookies for the holidays, control the urge to eat them as you decorate. They contain a lot of sugar, which combines with bacteria to create an acidic plaque that will erode your enamel slowly.
Once you’ve lost enamel, it’s gone for good. If you can’t resist your sweet tooth, brush your teeth after your snack.
2. Candy Canes
Candy canes are a minty treat that bathes your teeth in sugary residue. You must hold them in your mouth for the candy to dissolve. This prolongs your enamel’s exposure to cavity-causing bacteria.
Crunching them is no better. Hard candy can fracture teeth and damage restorations. You don’t want a dental emergency interrupting your holiday plans.
Eggnog is a great treat as you decorate your tree or wrap gifts. Unfortunately, it contains sugar. If you add a little alcohol to your eggnog, you’re creating a recipe for disaster. Alcohol causes dehydration, which will make your mouth dry. It creates an ideal environment for cavity-causing bacteria to get out of control quickly.
It is best to always choose water. If you have a cup of eggnog, drink it all at once and rinse your mouth with water when you’re finished.
4. Dried Fruit
Dried fruit is a sweet snack that’s loaded with nutrients. However, they are sticky and cling to your teeth. Since they contain natural sugars, they can weaken your enamel as their sticky residue sits on your teeth. Instead, eat fresh fruits and vegetables for a healthy snack.
5. Cranberry Sauce
Cranberry sauce can be found at holiday dinners across the country. However, it contains sugar and can stain your teeth. No amount of brushing will reverse decay or discoloration.
You can keep your smile healthy and beautiful during the holidays by being picky about the foods and drinks you consume. Besides watching what you eat, brush and floss your teeth to keep your mouth clean. Don’t skip your semi-annual cleaning and checkup.
About Dr. Racha W. Kadamani
Dr. Kadamani achieved her dental degree from the Loma Linda University School of Dentistry and is a member of the American Dental Association and Texas Dental Association. She is a lifelong learner and regularly continues her education to provide up-to-date care. Request an appointment through her website or call (210) 880-6438.