Dr Alex George reveals best time to brush your teeth
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In the lead up to Christmas many people will be stocking up on indulgent treats like wine, cheese and chocolate. While it is widely acknowledged that consuming too much of these is unwise, there can be some health benefits. And one of these in particular could help promote healthy teeth.
Doctor Khaled Kasem, chief orthodontist at Impress, explained how to best look after your teeth over the Christmas period.
Speaking to Express.co.uk, he recommended eating cheese as a way to protect teeth from stains.
He said: “While red wine or mulled wine is known for giving our smile that ‘purple’ glow, it can actually be avoided by pairing it with some delicious cheese.
“Cheese is full of calcium and it can protect your teeth from stains – so make sure a cheese platter is on the list for your Christmas Day feast.”
He shared other tips when it comes to festive food and your teeth.
“Christmas themed hot drinks are a delicious treat but with excessive sugar it’s important to limit your intake and avoid flavoured syrups where possible,” he said.
“So try to only have these items as a treat, rather than a replacement for your daily brews.”
Reduce your chocolate
He said: “Chocolate is absolutely everywhere at Christmas and of course we’re all going to treat ourselves to some festive sweets.
“However, as chocolate contains a high amount of sugar, it’s quite bad for your teeth.
“Rather than avoid it completely, go for more dark chocolate treats as this has a lot less sugar and therefore it’s much better for your oral health.”
All the pies
“While mince pies contain fruit, something that is good for your teeth, dried fruit typically has a really high sugar content,” Dr Kasem added.
“It can also get very stuck in your teeth and put you at a higher risk of getting cavities.
“So don’t eat all the pies.”
Tipples and top ups
He commented: “We all like a few drinks on Christmas Day but celebratory prosecco or champagne have quite a high acidity level.
“So, instead of cutting it out completely, just drink a small glass of water in between each glass.
“Little changes such as this one can make the biggest difference.”
He added: “We have all been taught that brushing our teeth twice a day for two minutes is the best method.
“And, while this is true, you should in fact brush more than this wherever needed – especially over Christmas.
“It’s especially important to brush after consuming Christmas cake, pudding, and mince pies as they are laden with dried fruit, which is high in sugar and can stick to your teeth.”
Symptoms of tooth decay can include:
- Toothache (tooth pain)
- Sharp pain in your tooth when eating or drinking hot, cold or sweet things (sensitive teeth)
- White, brown or black spots on your tooth.
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