Holiday Favorites That Can Ruin Your Teeth

Thanksgiving teethWe know you’re busy during the holidays, whether shopping for gifts, cooking for potlucks, or traveling out of town to visit with your family. It’s easy to let your oral health slip to the back of your mind, but it’s hard to undo the damage. Stained teeth in Shrewsbury, MA aren’t the most enjoyable way to start off the New Year. Dr. Todd Pizzi and Dr. Luciana Messina share their list of least dentist-friendly seasonal offerings.

Cranberries Everywhere

The popularity of cranberries during the holiday season probably has something to do with their peak harvesting time in none other than the month of November. Cranberry sauce, cranberry-and-popcorn garland–delicious, yes, but, like any dark berry, cranberries can stain your teeth. Also problematic is cranberries’ acidity, which is higher than most berries. Acid weakens tooth enamel, which can increase its susceptibility to staining. Don’t brush your teeth immediately after enjoying a cranberry-heavy dish. Instead, rinse your mouth with water, then chew a piece of sugar-free gum.

About That Popcorn…

Popcorn is a triple threat to your oral health. Let us count the ways: First, the obvious threat posed by unpopped kernels. Few foods can lay waste to a tooth or dental restoration like a hard little popcorn kernel. Next, the shells of kernels can become firmly lodged in your gums, whether beneath the gum line or between your teeth. Attempting to remove a piece of kernel could cause further trauma to the gums, inviting infection. Then there’s the seemingly harmless, fluffy corn itself. Corn is surprisingly sugar-heavy, and its starchy consistency makes it sticky and prone to clinging to teeth. We recommend avoiding it at all costs.

Professional Teeth Whitening Available

These holiday favorites aren’t the only things that can contribute to a stained smile. Using tobacco, neglecting oral hygiene, and avoiding your dentist are all surefire ways to end up with less-than-pearly whites. Of course, not all tooth enamel is naturally white; it’s been estimated that there are as many as 28 distinct shades of tooth enamel. No matter the cause of discolored enamel, we offer professional teeth whitening as a means of achieving a brighter smile during any season.

About Your Shrewsbury Dentists

To learn more about our services, or to schedule an appointment with one of our doctors, contact our Shrewsbury, MA dentist office at (508) 842-8838. We welcome residents of Shrewsbury, Boylston, North and South Grafton, Milford, and the surrounding communities.