Thanksgiving is just around the corner. That means it’s time to break out the turkey, stuffing and cranberry sauce for that big family dinner. As one of our nation’s favourite holidays, Thanksgiving brings people together to fill up on their choice comfort foods. But just because you are indulging doesn’t mean you can neglect your teeth.

So, if you are traveling to visit family, don’t neglect to pack a toothbrush and floss. If you require an electric toothbrush don’t forget to bring your charger so your brushing habits don’t change when you are out of town. It is no secret that it’s easy to go overboard with the sweets during Thanksgiving dinner. Consider taking it easy on the dessert platter, as there is plenty of sugar in the cranberry sauce and other dishes. Also, try to wash down your food with water or milk rather than juices or wine.

At many households the hosts will put out a tray of nuts before dinner. As delicious and healthy as they are, don’t make the mistake of trying to crack a shell with your teeth. Unless you’re intending on having your holiday interrupted by a visit to the emergency room, use the proper tool to crack your nutshells.

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If you really want to enjoy your Thanksgiving without impacting your oral health, have a look at the 3 tips listed below:

  1. Don’t forget to brush before bed.

If you happen to enjoy Thanksgiving dinners as much as most people do, then you might decide to heavily indulge, and that can result in a rising level of blood sugar. This can in turn make you feel rather sleepy, which could tempt some to go to bed immediately after eating Thanksgiving dinner. The problem with this is that you’re giving the bacteria in your mouth time to metabolize the food left in it. They will then multiply stick to your teeth, and produce exponentially more acid. This puts unnecessary wear on your teeth, and can be the breaking point for the formation of irreversible cavities. So, don’t forget to brush and floss your teeth before you go to sleep to keep your mouth in good condition. If you haven’t visited your dentist lately to receive a teeth cleaning, it’s a great time to consider scheduling an appointment.

  1. Avoid shells, bones and other solid substances.

Shells, bones, popcorn kernels and other hard food matter may be inviting to chew. The problem is that the extreme force involved in chewing these things can truly damage your teeth. That added pressure can crack, chip and fracture teeth. This can then lead to imperfections and the need to have teeth extracted. In short, the seemingly harmless action of chewing on tough substances can have huge consequences for your teeth. The best course of action here is to avoid chewing on these things when you can.

  1. Avoid stress and try to relax.

Thanksgiving is supposed to be a time when you can kick back and enjoy yourself. Try not to forget this when you have one or two relatives that might raise your blood pressure. Stress can cause everything from an overemphasized bite to teeth grinding. That’s why you should do your best to either deal with stressful people calmly, or if that’s not an option, avoid them completely. Just remember to enjoy yourself during Thanksgiving. Happiness can truly lower your overall stress levels that can lower your chances of dental complications.

Make Sure to Schedule A Checkup With Your Dentist

Thanksgiving isn’t an excuse to ignore your oral health and hygiene. If you haven’t seen your dentist in some time, Thanksgiving is the perfect time to schedule a teeth cleaning and checkup at your local dentist office. Your teeth will thank you if you do.

Finally, we would like to take this time to thank you for being a fan of Dr. Jason Harvey’s office. We look forward to posting more helpful content and hope to see you at our office soon!