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How to Keep Your Body and Mouth Healthy During the Holidays

The Holiday Season is quickly approaching! Thanksgiving is almost here, and then December comes. From now until the New Year there will be parties, big meals, plenty to drink and desserts. LOTS of desserts.

But before you start over-indulging yourself with all the holiday goodies, I want to talk about what all these meals can do to your mouth and the rest of your body.

Big meals, surgery drinks (I’m looking at you, hot coco with whipped cream), and alcohol are full of calories. When you take-in more calories than you burn, you’ll gain weight. Try to minimize this by downloading a calorie-counter app on your phone — and then USE it.

Just a small change to your meals here and there can drastically affect your calorie count. Maybe have that extra slice of ham, but then pass on the bread. Choices like this can add-up to fewer or extra calories, which can leave you with extra pounds. And things like a calorie counter can give you the information you need to make good choices. In addition, just a small amount of exercise a day can burn off some calories and help keep those extra pounds off. (Again, a calorie counter can help you)

Sugary snacks and drinks also have a lot of carbohydrates – these are the things the bacteria in your mouth love to eat. As the bacteria eat the carbohydrates, they excrete acid. This acid can erode the enamel on your teeth causing cavities. And let’s face it – you don’t want a cavity.

So, what can you do to keep your body and mouth healthy this holiday season?

1) Moderate your intake. You don’t need to eat ALL the cookies, or the several slices of cake. Have 1-2 cookies, or a half slice of cake. It still tastes just as good, but with a LOT less sugar and calories.
2) Drink water instead of soda. This is something you should do all year long.
3) Brush at least twice a day and floss once a day. But to REALLY get those teeth clean, try to brush three times a day, and use a fluoride mouth-rinse to kill the bacteria in your mouth.
4) Take it even a step further by brushing right after you have a sugary snack. Try keeping a toothbrush and toothpaste in your desk at work so you can brush after somebody brings in a plate of Christmas cookies.

Follow these simple steps, and you’ll make sure your teeth are still happy and healthy once the new year begins.

-Dr. Taj

For more information, be sure to visit me or my staff at one of the three locations shown below, go to my website at, or watch my Dental Minute video on how to keep your mouth healthy during the holiday season.