Maintain Healthy Teeth this Thanksgiving

healthy teeth this thanksgiving

healthy teeth this thanksgivingServing patients of Erwin, Jonesborough, and Greeneville TN

Thanksgiving is almost here. For many, this holiday represents a chance to gather with family and friends for a feast. Thanksgiving also represents an opportunity to take stock of what you are grateful for this year: your health, your job, and those special people in your life. During all the celebrating, make sure not to overlook your dental care. Your Greeneville family dentist at Tusculum Dental Care is here to help, suggesting these five tips to maintain good oral health this Thanksgiving.

Make meals shorter: In other words, put an end to mealtime once you’re finished with your plate of food, and avoid snacking on those Thanksgiving dishes throughout the day. This is because a drawn-out meal or snacking increases the amount of time your teeth are exposed to the sugars, starches, and acids that can fuel cavity-causing bacteria that already exist in your mouth. While we recognize that the feast is part of Thanksgiving, try to spend the majority of the day focusing on spending the time with family and friends in ways that don’t revolve around food: things like sharing stories or playing games.

Water, please: No matter the situation, drinking water is the best beverage choice you can make, for both your oral health and overall health. When you drink water during and after meals, this helps rinse away food particles before they can accumulate on the surfaces of your teeth. This is especially handy during long meals full of rich, sweet foods. Water also improves the flow of saliva, a natural lubricant in the mouth that prevents the formation of plaque.

Limit the sticky sides: What do cranberries, pecan pie, and sweet potato casserole have in common? All three are traditional staples of meals during the holiday season. And all three can be bad for your teeth. All three are sweet or sticky, which means any food particles from them are more likely to adhere to the surfaces of your teeth—and be difficult to remove unless you brush your teeth. Cranberry relish is arguably the worst offender, as it is also high in acid. Be sure to practice moderation if eating any of these, and rinse your mouth and brush your teeth after the meal.

Keep up your routine: Maintaining oral health starts at home, with a diligent regimen of daily brushing and flossing. The holiday season can be hectic, but that’s no excuse to neglect your teeth. Whether you are staying home for Turkey Day, heading across town to a friend’s house, or making a long trip, be sure to bring along your toothbrush and some floss so you can perform some oral health care after you eat. We recommend waiting until at least 30 minutes after the meal ends, giving your teeth time to recover and produce important protective minerals. If brushing isn’t an option, pick up a pack of sugar-free gum and enjoy a piece after the meal. This aids digestion and improves the flow of saliva, and helps to scrub away any leftover food particles that may have built up on your teeth.

Make an appointment for a cleaning: No one wants to deal with a filling during the holiday season, or ring in the New Year with a cavity. Your local Jonesborough dentists at Tusculum Dental Care can help you protect your smile.

Comprehensive dental care in Greeneville

To protect your teeth fully, you need to find the right dentist. At Tusculum Dental Care, we can perform general dentistry services such as cleanings and examinations. We also offer a range of preventive care procedures that can provide additional defense against problems such as tooth decay and gum disease. Or, if you are looking to improve the appearance of your smile, our Erwin dentists Dr. Craig Shepherd and Dr. Nathaniel Renner offer advanced services in the area of cosmetic dentistry. To learn more about our practice or schedule a tour of our facility in Greeneville, give us a call at (423) 639-7575.

Tusculum Dental Care is here to serve patients in the areas of Greeneville, Jonesborough, and Erwin in Tennessee.