The Holiday season is a terrific time for many of us. For a few months, we are encouraged to consume both food and drink that could be considered harmful to our teeth. But it’s the holiday’s, right? And it’s delicious… We can eat and drink what we want for one month out of every year…right? Well, remember the adage that says all things are fine in moderation and keep to it as a baseline for the Holiday season—you don’t have to completely stay away from the treats and the dinner parties and the holiday office parties, but you do need to partake in sugary treats in moderation.

It’s important to time a sugary treat around meal time, it could be either shortly before or after. The reason is that the saliva we produce from the meal will help to clean the teeth of the sugar, and the saliva will help to counter the acids constantly being produced by mouth bacteria. It’s also a good idea to drink plenty of clear water—no lemon added—to keep the teeth clean and counteract the possibility of dry mouth.

The one rule for Holiday eating is to be very cautious with sticky foods, especially sticky candies. Sticky foods stay on the teeth longer than other types; even cranberries can pose a problem. If you do intend to consume sticky foods then be sure to include clear water and remember to brush your teeth at your earliest convenience. Hard candies are also especially troublesome for teeth, for the same reasons as other sugary foods, but hard candies are also problematic because they can damage or chip teeth.

The Holiday season is a tricky time for teeth, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be absolutely enjoyable. Just remember to take care of your teeth. Remember the importance of a daily dental care routine, and brush at least twice daily—maybe include a brushing if you consume highly sugary foods or drinks—and floss once. And remember to keep to twice-yearly dental visits with your dentist at Premier Smile.