Excited about enjoying your favorite Thanksgiving dishes and desserts? While many of the popular holiday meals are delicious and mouth-watering, not every option is a good choice when it comes to preserving your teeth. Without proper care, you can end up facing certain kinds of oral health issues down the road, such as cavities and stains. Keep reading to learn which foods and drinks to watch out for if you want to maintain a healthy smile.
Almost everyone knows cranberry sauce as one of the main side dishes to enjoy during Thanksgiving. While it’s sweet and tasty, it’s also dark red and can easily stain your white tooth enamel if you aren’t careful. This fruit is acidic, too, meaning it can wear down your teeth over time. If you’re going to enjoy some cranberry sauce during your feast, be sure to rinse your mouth with water right after to get rid of any acid and dark pigments.
While pumpkin pie isn’t entirely bad for your teeth, those with berries can end up increasing the risk of tooth stains. That’s why, if you want to enjoy a slice of berry pie, don’t forget to rinse with a glass of water afterward. This will help keep the sugar and acid in the dessert from accumulating around your teeth and raising the chances of developing stains or cavities. Brush your teeth as well after about 30 minutes.
Of course, red wine is pigmented and can stain your pearly whites over time. However, you shouldn’t count white wine out when it comes to staining your teeth. This is mostly due to it being acidic, which will weaken your tooth enamel and make your smile more susceptible to stains as well as decay. If you’ve finished a glass of wine during dinner, remember to rinse your mouth and brush your teeth after half an hour.
When it comes to Thanksgiving, stuffing is one of the hallmark dishes. That said, it can also be slightly harmful to your teeth. This is mostly due to the bread, which is starchy and can invite harmful bacteria to eat away at your enamel. To avoid tooth decay and cavities, try minimizing your intake of stuffing during the holidays.
If you enjoy munching on salads, then you might be a fan of balsamic vinegar as your choice of dressing. Though delicious, it’s also not very kind to your smile. Not only is it dark-pigmented, but it’s also acidic and can ruin your tooth enamel. Avoid using too much balsamic vinegar in your salads and be sure to wash it down with a nice cup of water.
Thanksgiving can be an enjoyable time for both you and your oral health! Just make sure you’re careful with these popular foods and beverages, and your smile should thank you for it.
About the Author
Dr. Hasan Yap has over two decades of experience providing essential dental services. He earned his Doctor of Dental Surgery from the Universidad de Panama and is a member of several professional organizations, such as the Florida Dental Association. Want to know more about taking care of your smile during the holidays? Visit our website or give us a call at 954-564-7121.