The holiday season is finally upon us! For many of your kids, it means no more homework or early bedtimes, but it also means more candy. However, if your little ones have braces, they might need to skip that last part this year.
The unsafe candies:
With National Hard Candy Day rolling along on December 19, it is important that you know the negative consequences of eating hard candy while wearing braces. Seasonal candies like butterscotch, candy canes, and toffees can damage brackets or pop them off completely. This means coming in to get your braces repaired, which can be a hassle—especially during the busy holidays. Save yourself a visit and skip that candy cane this season!
If you have removable retainers or clear aligners, you don’t need to skip hard candy entirely. However, candies can stain aligners, lead to cavities if you don’t brush and floss, as well as cause chipped teeth if you bite down. To be safe, make sure that you always suck on candies—rather than risking a chip. Even if you have retainers and aligners, moderation is key.
The safe candies:
Do not worry! We are not going to force you into a candy-free holiday season. There are plenty of candies and seasonal sweets that are soft and safe to consume with braces. Replace hard candies with chocolates, soft sugar cookies, brownies, or hot cocoa as a safe and sweet alternative.
Without proper oral hygiene, no type of candy is completely safe! The high amounts of sugar in candies make your mouth a breeding ground for harmful bacteria when consumed. These bacteria can act on sugar to form acids, which dissolve and break away the enamel in your teeth. This is what causes tooth decay and cavities. Therefore, it’s important to avoid overconsumption of candies or sugary foods—everything in moderation!
Even though it’s the holiday season, you still must maintain good dental hygiene. Brush your teeth 30 minutes after consuming foods and drinks with high sugar content, and floss at least once a day to remove any small food particles stuck in between your teeth. If you wear aligners, be sure to brush and floss after eating or drinking anything other than water.
By following these simple precautions, you can enjoy a fun and safe holiday season with a healthy smile. From all of us at Hutta & Price Orthodontics, we wish you a happy holiday! To schedule your next appointment, call us at (614) 855-8800.