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Candy canes, cookies and cavities: preventative dental care tips for the holidays

'Tis the season to indulge in festive, sugary delights, but with some preventative dental tips for the holidays, a smile can rival the brilliance of twinkling lights for a lifetime. Remember, moderation is key for savouring special treats, benefiting overall health and dental wellbeing.

At One Dental, we understand the importance of finding that balance. We're not suggesting anyone skips the festive treats—hey, we love them too! But a bit of proactive care can go a long way, ensuring those post-holiday checkups are a walk in the park for both dental professionals and patients alike.

The sweet secrets to maintaining strong teeth

Due to the influx of sugary goodness, Christmas is the perfect time of year to talk about dental health and ensure everyone in your family is managing it effectively. Strategic oral care involves educating patients on mindful snacking and the importance of post-indulgence oral hygiene practices.

Sugary foods can lead to increased acidity in the mouth, contributing to tooth decay and cavities. Being mindful of snacking choices minimises dental impact by reducing the frequency of sugar exposure.

After indulging in the good stuff, prioritise dental hygiene. Brush and floss your teeth as promptly as possible to remove residual sugars and prevent the formation of harmful acids. Rinsing with fluoride or an antimicrobial mouthwash can further neutralise acids and promote a healthy oral environment.

Smart snacking and healthy alternatives

While we don’t discourage you from enjoying your seasonal favourites, it’s worthwhile to introduce some healthier alternatives for balance. Include fresh, crisp vegetables such as carrots and celery sticks as a nutritious snack or substitute for crackers. Beyond providing a satisfying crunch, they also stimulate saliva production, assisting in the natural reduction of plaque.

Elevate the holiday cheer with a plate of assorted cheeses. Whether enjoyed alone or shared with loved ones, cheese not only delights with its rich flavour but is also a great source of calcium and phosphates, actively supporting the remineralisation of your tooth enamel.

Sweet treats don't always require processed sugars, preservatives or harmful ingredients. You can enjoy a sweet fix worry-free by indulging in abundant fresh summer fruits such as apples, strawberries and watermelon during the Christmas season. Apples naturally cleanse teeth, and strawberries, rich in malic acid, contribute to teeth whitening. Watermelon, with its high water content, not only satisfies sweet cravings but also promotes saliva production.

Must-have dental products for preventative care over the holidays

While the rule of cleaning your teeth twice a day is well-known, the choice of toothbrush matters. For maximum effectiveness in cavity reduction, use an interdental brush. These brushes reach between teeth, addressing areas that traditional brushing might overlook, providing an extra layer of protection against bacteria that can cause cavities.

To complete the brushing routine, you’ll need toothpaste and floss. Floss tackles plaque and debris between teeth, thwarting the buildup of harmful bacteria and reducing the risk of gum disease and cavities.

Fluoride mouthwash is another powerful ally in cavity prevention and will enhance the average oral healthcare routine over the holidays and all year round. Fluoride strengthens enamel, providing lasting resistance against acids.

One Dental also has a variety of products designed to assist special care patients. Among these is the Surround Toothbrush, available in adult and child sizes. This toothbrush is ideal for individuals with a low tolerance for daily brushing or those who face challenges in using or holding a toothbrush. The innovative design features a triple-headed pad with angled bristles that effectively surround the teeth, enabling simultaneous brushing of all surfaces.

Common dental problems at Christmas

While broken or cracked teeth, often resulting from the consumption of less familiar foods, are a prevalent cause for emergency dentist visits, several other issues can arise due to changes in diet, routines and increased sweet treats. The most apparent consequence of sugary overindulgence is the heightened risk of cavities and tooth decay.

Gum sensitivity and inflammation are common dental concerns during the holiday period. These issues may stem from dietary choices or inadequate oral hygiene and can potentially escalate to more severe conditions, such as gingivitis.

Additionally, an increase in the intake of foods and beverages such as wine, coffee and brightly coloured holiday treats can lead to teeth staining. Though primarily aesthetic, it's crucial to remain mindful of this issue, as preventive dental care easily manages it.

Talk to the dental supply experts

One Dental is your premier, 100% Australian-owned dental supplier for professionals, educators and dental students. This Christmas, we can assist you in keeping smiles merry and bright. Wishing all dental professionals a season of cavity-free delight!

Our professional team has extensive knowledge and can offer tailored solutions that will help you enhance your preventative dental capabilities.

Talk to us today or view our preventative dental range now.

Candy canes, cookies and cavities: preventative dental care tips for the holidays