The holidays are known as a time to indulge in homemade sugar cookies, your coworker’s famous fudge, and cup after cup of eggnog. But while these tempting goodies may taste good, they aren’t necessarily great for your teeth.
According to the American Dental Association, the foods and beverages you drink have a direct effect on tooth decay. The worst culprits? Those with added sugars, a.k.a. most holiday favorites. This season, say no to the below items, which have landed on your dentist’s naughty list, and replace them with some, well, nicer alternatives.
Candy canes These sweet treats dissolve slowly, exposing your teeth to sugar for a longer period of time.
For the same long-lasting, minty flavor, try chewing gum with the natural sweetener, Xylitol, which doesn’t harm enamel.
Chewy candies Taffy and caramels can get stuck in braces and between teeth, letting plaque build up and causing serious damage.
Great tart alternative? Sliced Granny Smith Apples with a sprinkle of lemon juice.
Popcorn It’s fun to receive a festive assortment of popcorn flavors, but the tasty snack is one of the most common causes of cracked teeth.
Try pumpkin or sunflower seeds for the same salty, sweet taste without the danger.
What else can you do? Brush more frequently, about three times a day, to help keep these holiday treats from causing cavities and damage to your teeth. And if you experience any pain or tooth injuries, be sure to talk to your dentist.
Photo credit: Hubertk