There is no doubt that Thanksgiving dinner will give your jaw a good workout. Read on if you want to know the best food and drinks for your teeth and gums.
Worst: Alcohol and sugary drinks are at the top of list as your teeth’s worst enemy! Sugar feeds the bacteria in your mouth and in turn spits out acid on your teeth, if left on the teeth it can cause decay. Alcohol works as a dehydrator and will decrease the amount of saliva you have in your mouth. Saliva helps neutralize the acid helping to prevent decay.
Best: Water is always the best option for obvious reasons, plus it can help you feel more full which in turn prevents overeating. If you just need some flavor try opting for an herbal tea which is a great source of antioxidants.
Worst: Sticky sweets or nuts. These are the worst culprit as far as Thanksgiving goes. Not only do they contain huge amounts of sugars, the stickiness of these treats will gladly make a cozy home in the crevices of your teeth which can lead to cavities. The calories can also add up giving you a double whammy against your waistline and teeth.
Best: Plain nuts, vegetables, and cheese. If you ask us this sounds better as an appetizer anyway! Nuts and cheeses are a great source of protein and calcium which is great for your body and teeth. Vegetables help produce saliva which as you know from above is also a good thing.
Worst: Carbs and sweet foods are going to be your worst offenders during the main course. Rolls, candied carrots, stuffing, and mashed potatoes are loaded with starch which is prime cavity causing food. We know, these are the best foods! Like all things moderation is best, just be sure to wash it down with some water.
Best: Turkey! Not only is turkey packed with protein. This delicious bird is also low fat so eat as much as you can handle! After all, it is the centerpiece of Thanksgiving and provides us with the best nap all year.
Worst: We will try not to ruin this part for you, and we’re so sorry for you pecan pie lovers, but it’s a dental mess. This pie is sticky, chuck full of sugar, and has chewy pecans, an almost perfect recipe for decay.
Best: The second best Thanksgiving dish in our opinion is pumpkin pie. It is full of calcium and vitamin C making it a great option. Its still has quit a bit of sugar in it so keep portion control in mind.
How to care for your teeth on Thanksgiving
We will not lie; most of us here have eaten all of this stuff on Thanksgiving. One thing we do is follow a set of rules that sets us up for a tooth happy day. Thirty minutes after the eating frenzy has ended, step away and brush your teeth for two minutes. If you’ve had extra amounts of sticky foods get a good flossing in too, this can help undo some of the damage.
Above all else we hope everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving and can enjoy everything you love about it!