All I Want For Christmas Is Healthy Teeth: 3 Tips For Avoiding Holiday Dental Mishaps

The Christmas carol about wanting two front teeth for Christmas is fun for kids, but once you have your adult teeth, you don't want to end up asking Santa – or your dentist – for two new ones. That means watching out for holiday hazards that could put your teeth in jeopardy. Take a look at some tips for avoiding dental emergencies during the holidays.

1. Use a Mouthguard for Winter Sports

If you have some time off over the holiday season, it's a great time to take a ski vacation or visit your local ice skating rink. Unfortunately, crashing on the slopes or falling on the ice can do serious damage to your teeth if you happen to hit mouth-first.

You can protect your teeth by using a mouthguard when you engage in winter sports. Mouthguards protect your teeth and gums from the damage that can be caused by an impact and can also keep you from biting your tongue when you fall. You can buy sports mouthguards at most sporting goods stores, but a custom mouthguard designed by your dentist is more effective, and can even help prevent concussions and brain injuries by absorbing shock from the impact.

2. Watch What You Eat

The holiday season is known for many delicious treats, but it's important to use caution when eating them, and not just because some of them can cause cavities. Candy canes, for example, can cause soft-tissue injuries to the mouth when sucked into a point. Toffees and other sticky candies can pull out a filling. Hard candy and peanut brittle can crack a tooth when you bite down.

And it's not just candy that poses a problem. You should also be careful when biting into hors d'oeuvres containing olives or cherries topping a holiday dessert or drink – the pits can be hard enough to crack a tooth. Use caution when you're enjoying your holiday meals and make sure to brush and floss your teeth after eating.

3. Schedule a Checkup

If you're overdue for a dental checkup, schedule it before your dentist's office closes for the holidays. The last thing that you want is for a small cavity or infection to blossom into a major toothache or abscess while your dentist is busy celebrating the holidays. During a checkup, your dentist will have a chance to catch early signs of a dental problem and take steps to fix them before the holiday vacation starts. With a clean bill of dental health, you'll have peace of mind while you're celebrating the holidays.

Keep in mind that sometimes accidents happen even when you've taken all possible precautions. To learn more, contact an emergency dental clinic like Advara Dental & Dentures