Ten ways to protect our mouths from Christmas excesses

Christmas is just around the corner. And although it is true that the coronavirus pandemic is going to modify, and much, the way in which we are going to celebrate these holidays, surely something will remain of the typical excesses of these dates.

Large meals, dinners, increased consumption of alcohol, sweets, trips, will be repeated in the coming days, regardless of what the health authorities decide on the rules of celebration.

A healthy mouth allows better conditions to face the infection by SARS-Cov-2 and its consequences.

Oral diseases in general, and periodontal diseases (gingivitis and periodontitis) in particular, are among the most prevalent in humans.

It is estimated that at least 8 out of 10 peoples over 35 years of age have some problem related to the gums.

A temporary relaxation in oral hygiene measures due to vacations, trips, parties … can be a trigger for gum disease, worsening gum disease, and/or worsening general health (weight gain, hypertension, hypercholesterolemia …).

Thus, oral health specialists list a decalogue of recommendations that we must follow.

– It is important to watch what and how much is eaten, with special attention to Christmas sweets. Marzipan, nougat, shortbread cookies are products that contain a large amount of sugar, responsible for the appearance of cavities.
So, although we do not deprive ourselves of trying them, it is best not to eat them every day and, above all, not to snack between meals.

– Although we still do not know if we will be able to travel to see our relatives or how many we will be able to gather for a meal away from home, it is normal for us to have some lunch or dinner away from home. And this cannot be an excuse to stop brushing our teeth, at least before we go to bed.

There are smaller or foldable travel brushes that you can carry in your pocket or purse. The objective is not only to remove food debris but also to prevent the formation of bacterial plaque, thus preventing problems of inflammation of the gums.

– Take care of your dental sensitivity. There are a large number of drinks that are acidic and that are not usually identified as such as wine, beer, soft drinks, juices, and even berry infusions.
If your teeth already feel sensitive when eating, drinking, or brushing, these acidic drinks will increase that sensitivity even more. A specific treatment recommended by your dentist and control of the consumption of these acids will help alleviate dental hypersensitivity.

– Prevent your teeth from staining. Red wine, coffee, tea, cola, or dark chocolate consumed in excess cause staining of the teeth. Avoid them. And of course, tobacco is not a good option if you want to keep your teeth white.

– And what foods harm my teeth the most? Surely the foods that cause the most cavities of those that we are going to consume on these dates will be the typical Christmas desserts and sweets. Of all of them, the three that can increase this risk the most are candied fruits, nougat, and marzipan.

As it is most likely that we cannot resist the temptation to eat them, it is best to always eat them at meals, because more saliva is released. Eating sticky or slowly dissolving sweets is also not highly recommended.

– And of course, watch out for hard nougat or seafood! Biting hard food with your teeth can break them, especially if we have fillings or veneers, as they can fracture or come off.

– It can prevent bad breath. To do this, in addition to the teeth, do not forget to brush your tongue. A fresh breath is part of your appearance in front of others and it is important to avoid it to be impeccable at these parties.

– And what if you try to quit smoking? With the beginning of the new year, good resolutions also come and your health, not only oral, will thank you.

– Take advantage of work and school holidays to go to the dentist and check your oral health.

– As we have months ahead in which Covid-19 continues to coexist, extreme security measures. Toothbrushes and other oral hygiene tools should not be shared, not even mouthwashes. Avoid putting the toothbrushes of different family members in the same glass. Move the toothbrushes away from the toilet and if you have overcome the coronavirus infection, change your toothbrush.

– And you can take advantage of and give dental health gifts.

the point out that if it is not possible to follow this decalogue, at least it is necessary to keep brushing teeth before going to bed since the decrease in salivary flow when sleeping causes changes in the pH, which increases the risk of complications in oral health.