Holidays, birthday parties, weddings, family get togethers, neighborhood block parties are all great times of celebrating with friends and family. While each occasion is different, with a unique feel and atmosphere, they all have plenty of opportunities to chat and visit. They also have a large spread of yummy food and drinks as it isn’t a celebration without food. With food being the central component of these celebratory functions, it means you likely indulge more than you normally do or want to. If you’re trying to eat healthy, these food-centered gatherings can pose a dilemma. How do enjoy yourself while also not going overboard and over-indulging? Here are some tips that can help you get through the holidays and other social functions in a way that helps your teeth and subsequently, your waistline:
Always have some water in hand. Water is important for your body as a large percentage of it is made from water. Unlike other beverages, water doesn’t have added calories, sugars and artificial flavoring. Water keeps your body working great while also not putting on the pounds. Water not only refreshes your thirst, but it also a good mouthwash by cleaning out trapped food particles from on and between teeth and by washing off sugary coatings from drinks from the surface of teeth. Simply take a swig after eating something and either swish and spit out or swallow if there are now restrooms available.
Watch what you eat. Your coworker’s bread pudding may look like a tempting delight as well as your aunt’s brownies. Gooey desserts as well as pastries, breads, potato chips, pretzels and candy are all foods, which though they are yummy, can do a number on your teeth. These sugary and starchy foods are notorious for easily disintegration on the mouth that leave particles in the mouth. These food particles are full of bacteria that can get broken down into enamel destroying plaque. Hard foods and foods that are sticky and hard should also be limited or avoided as they can weaken the enamel by scratching or chipping it.
Bring a travel toothbrush and toothpaste. While there may be instances where you’re not wearing something with pockets or a purse where you can conspicuously carry your toothbrush and toothpaste, it is a good idea to get into the habit of carrying a travel-size toothbrush and toothpaste. Many of these can fit into pant pockets and purses for easy carrying. After a large meal or a snack, simply go to the restroom and do a quick teeth brushing.
Be vigilant about at-home oral hygiene. There are times when busyness and tiredness can make it tempting to skip teeth brushing and flossing for one day or night. When you spend many hours mindlessly indulging in foods and snacks at a celebratory event, however, it is important to not skimp on doing your at-home oral hygiene routine. After consuming extra (and often unhealthy) food there is more of a risk for debris getting lodged and stuck between teeth. Just skipping the flossing and brushing of one’s teeth for night can be the start of a bad habit of more frequent non-brushing and flossing which can increase one’s chances of tooth decay and gum disease.
Carry some mouthwash. Travel-sized bottles of mouthwash are easy to discreetly carry and it helps remove germs and bacteria from the mouth. Mouthwash also helps freshen the breath which comes in handy when you’re doing a lot of socializing.
A celebration is a great time to catch up with friends and family as well as enjoy yummy food. While these gatherings may encourage you to eat too much of the wrong things, there are some easy tips and tricks like drinking plenty of water and avoiding certain foods that can help you maintain the great health of your teeth.
Seeing your dentist every six months is another important component of proper oral hygiene that patients are encouraged to implement to help combat the possible negative effects of over-indulgent eating during times of celebrations. If you haven’t seen your dentist in a while, contact them today to schedule an appointment.