5 ways to protect your smile over Christmas

Christmas is the perfect time of year to visit with friends and family over a nice meal or with a warm beverage. Undeniably all of us are a little bit guilty of overindulgence this time of year.

Protecting your teeth from staining and the effects of additional sugar at Christmas time is actually quite simple — you might not even need to change your normal habits. Whether you’ve got a sweet tooth or have several nights out planned here’s what you can do to protect your smile!

Keep your normal oral hygiene routine

By far the best thing you can do to protect your smile over Christmas and New Year is keep your normal oral hygiene routine!

A good routine includes:

Waiting one hour after eating before brushing
Brushing twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste
Using mouth wash (if required)
Using interdental brushes (if required)

Ahead of Christmas, if you’re prone to tooth sensitivity we recommend you find a toothpaste and/or mouthwash specifically designed for sensitive teeth. Generally these formulas can help keep your teeth comfortable over Christmas — potentially preventing an emergency trip to the dentist!

Drink plenty of water

Drinking water is one of the best things you can do for your oral health over Christmas and New Year as it will help neutralise the acids in your mouth.

Water cuts down the acidic effects of fizzy drinks, wine, and other acidic foods and beverages. Essentially it rinses them away, so naturally the more you drink the better off you’ll be!

If you’ve just had your teeth whitened (with in the last few weeks or months) you’ll definitely want to drink water in between any alcoholic drinks. This will help protect your teeth from decay and reduce the likelihood of staining.

Reduce your sugar intake

Admittedly, this is the hardest rule for everyone this time of year. For lots of us, completely avoiding sugar over the festive period would be almost impossible! Which is why we recommend you eat sugary snacks or drinks in moderation.

Are sports drinks an issue for oral health

Here are some helpful tips to protect your smile:

Wait an hour after brushing your teeth to have sugar or food
Try not to eat sugar right before bed
Limit the number of hard sweets you consume

It’s best to try and avoid hard candies or crunching on ice cubes over Christmas. Often these items can chip your teeth and it may be a few days before you can book an appointment to see a dentist.

Drink alcohol in moderation

You may or may not drink alcohol, but it’s worth mentioning for those that do, to drink in moderation. Drinking with your meals is often the best as there’s often plenty of foods to help neutralise the acid — like cheese.

Additionally, alcohol (wine in particular) can cause your teeth to stain. This may be worse if you’ve recently had your teeth whitened! It’s a good idea to sip water in between your alcoholic drinks as this will help neutralise the large amounts of acid and sugar present in spirits, wine, cider, and beer.

alcoholic drinks

Avoid opening things with your teeth

Every year it seems there’s always that one person at a party or gathering that tries to open a bottle or item with their teeth — sometimes resulting in a dental emergency.

To avoid any potential issues, try to use proper bottle openers, can openers, and scissors where appropriate. This will not only ensure nothing is damaged during the process but will also protect your teeth from harm!

Whether you take it easy at Christmas and New Year or live to party, there are plenty of ways to protect your smile.

If you need emergency dentistry services please check our Christmas office hours and leave us a message, we’ll get back to you as soon as we can.

At AP Smilecare, we’re committed to helping you protect a smile you’ll love for years to come. For any of your dentistry needs, feel free to give us a call on 01254 297 000 to see how we can help!