Even though dentists always know when you haven’t been flossing, luckily, they don’t keep naughty or nice lists. But you should still give yourself the gift of good oral hygiene this holiday season because it’s the gift that keeps on giving all year long!

It can feel nearly impossible to make healthy choices during the holidays. There are places to go and people to see and many, many things to eat. That’s why it’s important to keep these little things in mind to make a big difference the next time you go to the dentist.

Watch Out for Red & White Wine

Yes, you read that right, white wine is just as bad for your teeth as red wine! In fact, white wine might be worse. Whether you’re drinking red, white, rosé or champagne, it doesn’t make much of a difference because all wines are acidic beverages that will erode the enamel that protects your teeth.

Drinking water between glasses of wine is an easy way to minimize the damage to your teeth because it washes away some of the wine that’s sticking around and also dilutes the acidity level in your mouth. Simply swish water around between glasses to prevent the acid from settling on your teeth.

…And Wait One Hour to Brush

If you have this blog post in the back of your mind after chowing down on dinner or finishing a glass of wine, you might rush to brush your teeth – and that’s a good idea! But make sure you wait one hour before brushing your teeth. Enamel can be softened by beverages like wine and brushing softened enamel isn’t ideal. Once enamel is gone, it’s gone!

Don’t Chomp on Candy Canes

Those candy canes hanging from the Christmas tree can seem awfully tempting, but don’t forget that hard candies, in particular, cause a lot of problems! That’s because hard candy dissolves slowly, which exposes teeth to sugar for longer and gives bacteria more time to produce the acids that wear away enamel.

Of course, that doesn’t mean you should chomp down on hard candy, either. Unless you want to chip a tooth! So, don’t worry if you can’t help yourself over the holidays, just make sure you enjoy candy canes responsibly.

Be Prepared

We understand you’re busy during the holidays, constantly traveling to new places to see familiar faces. That’s why it never hurts to keep a small pack of dental floss or a mini portable toothbrush and toothpaste in your purse or your car to get rid of any unnecessary build-up on your teeth!

Visit Your Dentist Next

After you’ve visited Grandma Fern, Cousin Jessica and Uncle Rob, make sure you visit your dentist! You should be making regular visits to the dentist at least twice a year. If you had a few too many candy canes over the holidays, then there’s no better time for a cleaning.

If you’re interested in scheduling an appointment after the holidays or looking for a  dentist, the team at Dental Health Partners in Cedar Rapids. Nothing compares to seeing a patient look at their new smile for the first time!