How To Stop Those Candy Cane Cavities

If you’re like most people, you probably don’t think about cavity prevention during the holidays. It’s easy to get caught up in the excitement of the season, especially if you’re surrounded by family and friends. However, it’s important to remember that your oral health should always be a top priority—and that includes during Christmas! Christmas is a time for love, family, and nearly endless sweets. It can be easy to forget about oral care during the holidays, but it’s important to be mindful of the sugar you consume to prevent future cavities.

It’s not just sugar that causes cavities. Another common culprit is the acid in certain foods and drinks, such as citrus fruits and juices. When these types of foods are consumed with other sugary treats, they can speed up tooth decay even more. Candy canes are the perfect stocking stuffers, but they can also be the perfect cavity-makers. If you don’t brush and floss after every meal, your teeth are at risk for cavities. The good news is that there are plenty of ways to enjoy your favorite holiday treats while still protecting your teeth from damage.

Carry a dental care kit

Good oral care is the number one way to prevent cavities. You should brush after every meal, and flossing is important as well. You should also create a travel dental care kit that includes floss, toothpaste with fluoride, and mouthwash as well. Get a fluoride rinse. Fluoride is great for strengthening enamel and preventing cavities from forming in the first place. You can buy fluoridated rinses at most drug stores or online. By engaging in good dental care regularly, your teeth will be much less likely to develop cavities.

Another trick is to try to eat scheduled meals instead of snacking throughout the day. Snacking gives your teeth less time to neutralize the acid in your mouth. If you need more help to protect your enamel, ask your dentist about fluoride treatments.

Eat less sugar

Sugar turns acidic when it sits in your mouth. When these sugars are left on your teeth for long enough, they will start to dissolve the enamel on your teeth, making them much more susceptible to cavities. This is especially true if you have multiple cavities or other dental work that makes it easier for food to get stuck between teeth. Sugar is a huge cause of tooth decay and cavities, so limit your intake of sugary drinks, like soda or juice.

If you’re craving something sweet, try opting for sugar-free options instead—you’ll still get the same great flavor without any of the damage! Reach for an item that contains a different sweetener instead of regular sugar. While it’s still not recommended that you consume large amounts of Xylitol (or any other ingredient), this particular ingredient has been shown in studies to reduce the risk of developing cavities by up to 80%.

Common artificial sweeteners that mimic the taste of sugar include:

  • Sucralose
  • Aspartame
  • Monk fruit
  • Stevia
  • Saccharin

Avoid sticky or tacky foods

The longer something stays on your teeth, the more likely it will cause damage. You should also avoid sticky foods if you have any dental work, as they may pull out fillings or crowns. Take frequent breaks from eating sweets by brushing your teeth with fluoride toothpaste or chewing sugarless gum. This will help neutralize the acid in your mouth, so it doesn’t have time to eat away at your teeth.

Candy canes are also notorious for causing tooth decay because they get wedged in between your teeth and stay there for hours at a time. Candy canes create plaque that can lead to cavities if left untreated. As the candy melts in your mouth, it creates an acidic environment that can eat away at your enamel and cause cavities. If this happens to you on a regular basis, then consider using a toothbrush with soft bristles before bedtime so that any leftover sugar from those tasty treats doesn’t have time to settle into place overnight.

Some of the worst foods for tooth enamel include:

  • Caramels
  • Hard candies
  • Candy canes
  • Toffee
  • Taffy

Stay hydrated

Drink plenty of water this holiday season. This will stimulate salivary flow (and therefore neutralization) as well as cleanse your mouth of food particles that could otherwise lead to plaque buildup on your teeth’s surfaces (which could then lead to cavities). Water can rinse away what is stuck on the teeth and keep them clean throughout the day. You should drink at least 8 ounces every hour while eating or drinking sugary foods (including candy). Additionally, be mindful of how much sugary food or drink you consume each day—especially if you’re eating or drinking something sweet every time someone offers it up!

Water will not only help prevent cavities, but it will make you feel good. Drinking enough water is vital for making sure your body stays hydrated throughout the holidays when so much of our focus is on food and family. You may even notice that when you’re drinking enough water, you feel less hungry during meals and snacks—which means less sugar intake.

Regularly visit your dentist

We know it’s hard to stay on top of your oral health all year, not just around the holidays. Unfortunately, if you don’t make a special effort to stay on track, you could be setting yourself up for a lot of pain and heartache come January.

Make sure you are having regularly scheduled visits with your dentist. If you aren’t sure how often you should be going in for check-ups, ask them. They can help set up a schedule that makes sense based on your lifestyle and goals. You’ll feel good knowing that your teeth are being looked after by professionals who know what they’re doing—and they’ll thank us later when they see how healthy your smile looks.

You can trust our team to deliver high-quality dental care, whatever your situation may be. Reach out to us now with questions or concerns, and we’ll be happy to help!

Posted in Uncategorized

Comments are closed.