Sound Oral Care Through Holiday Flurries

2256062784_e2ce49cfa6In the midst of this busy holiday season, it’s easy to lose sight of your normally exemplary oral care. With visitors, travel, presents and baking, it’s easy to miss a flossing session here or there, eat one too many cookies, or forget to schedule your next appointment with your Eugene OR dentist.

That’s why your team at Feldmanis Family Dentistry is offering these tips for caring for your teeth through this busy season– we know how full it can be, and we want to help!

1) Be sure to eat well

Eating a balanced diet can be hard with the seasonal influx of treats, but it’s important for several reasons. First, nutritious food is the foundation on which great oral health is built. There is no way around it– you have to feed your body the nutrients it needs for tooth and gum health. Second, making sure to eat well also leaves less room for damaging sugary foods.

If you do choose to eat sweets, be sure to eat them with a meal, when the saliva you’re generating can help wash everything down. Sweet drinks like eggnog or wine would be best imbibed with sips of water in between to help wash sugar down. And if possible, avoid the sticky sweets– taffy and caramels– that get stuck in your teeth for hours (and feed bacteria).

2) Practice stress-reducing activities

Stress can be a big part of the holidays, and it’s a big factor in harming tooth health as well. Increased stress often leads both to bruxism (tooth grinding) and clenching of the jaw. For obvious reasons, this puts a strain on your jaw muscles, but it can cause gum recession and tooth wear as well.

Increased stress also raises the levels of cortisol— the stress hormone– in your blood stream. This hormone has been linked with periodontitis, possibly because it effects saliva production.

Avoid stress through stress-reducing activities: exercising, meditation, and yoga are all great self care habits that can help get your through the busy times and feeling on top of your game. Remember to take time out for relaxation!

3) Oral care

Oral care may be a little more complicated over the holidays, because there are more opportunities to eat things that affect your oral health. We recommend brushing after eating sweets or drinking a sweet drink like mulled wine. This allows you to enjoy yourself and the holidays without paying for it later.

The busy season also can hurt oral care simply because we get swept away in all the helter skelter and forget– forget the electric toothbrush on that trip to visit Aunt Marcie, or forget to brush all together! Continuing to follow your oral health care routine inspite of all the extra activities is critical. This includes staying current on your appointments with Dr. Feldmanis. The holidays are a time that many patients tend to fall behind– don’t let this be you!

Happy holidays!

From everyone at Feldmanis Family Dentistry, happy, healthy holidays! We know that with a little extra attention, your oral health will thrive throughout the holiday season, and we can’t wait to see you at your next appointment with Dr. Feldmanis, your Eugene OR dentist.

Photo Credit: paulmcdee via Compfight cc

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