Tips for limiting the damage Christmas can do to your teeth

One of the major enjoyments of Christmas is sharing food and drink with friends and family. And treating yourself to a little more of what you fancy than does your teeth good. We’re not planning on giving up all our Christmas treats, and neither should you. But here are a few tips on how to limit the damage.

Beware of acid.  If you are drinking full fat coke, wine or other acidic drinks, DON’T brush your teeth for at least an hour afterwards – acid causes erosion, and you’ll compound the effect by brushing.

  1. If you’re snacking, savoury is better for the teeth than sweet – you’ll do less damage with a packet of cheese and onion crisps than with a packet of raisins (although if you are watching the fat you may want to think again!).
  2. Planning a chocolate binge?  Eat a chocolate bar all in one go.  Yes you did hear right!  It’s far better for your teeth than breaking off pieces throughout the day.
  3. Stray bits from party nibbles carry on doing damage long after you’ve swallowed the food.  Sip water throughout the party.
  4. Having a morning-after-the-night-before orange juice?  Brush your teeth before rather than after you drink it – fruit and fruit juice are high in acid.
  5. Make sure you use an electric toothbrush.  It reduces the staining caused by culprits such as red wine, and is good for your gums.
  6. Get into the habit of flossing – with all those great movies on over Christmas, you can always do it front of the TV – as long as it your other half doesn’t mind!
  7. If there’s a lot of snacking going on during the day and you are without your toothbrush, use sugar free gum to stimulate the saliva and wash away the acid.
  8. A mouthwash is another good option if you can’t clean your teeth.
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