It’s December, and that means the holidays are nearly upon us! For many patients, this may mean a break from school, later bedtimes, and more sweets. However, if your kids are undergoing orthodontic treatment, they may need to be careful about the sweets they eat this season.
Candies to avoid
The winter season is full of sweets, and unfortunately for braces-wearers, National Hard Candy Day is December 19. This holiday is a great reminder to steer clear of hard candies, like candy canes, caramels, or butterscotch if you have braces. These candies can easily break off a bracket or bend wires. That would mean squeezing in an appointment during the busy holiday season. Though we love seeing your smiling faces, save yourself from an emergency visit and skip hard candy altogether if you wear braces! If you have Invisalign or retainers, you may not need to entirely skip hard candy. However, these candies are not 100% safe. They can stain clear aligners or retainers, lead to chipped teeth if you bite down, and increase the risk of cavities if you do not brush or floss properly. Keep your smile safe! If you have aligners or retainers, practice moderation and never bite down on hard candy.
On Hard Candy Day and beyond, stick to orthodontic-friendly sweets! Fortunately, there are plenty to choose from during the holidays. Whether you opt for sweet hot cocoa, melt-in-your-mouth sugar cookies, or fudgy brownies, you have plenty of options.
Tips to remember
No matter what sweets you eat, remember to practice good oral hygiene. Sugar-filled diets are a breeding ground for bacteria in the mouth. These bacteria will feed on sugar and produce enamel-eating acids that could damage teeth. This can lead to decay and cavities if you aren’t regularly brushing and flossing the bacteria away. Though your schedule may be busy, stick to a good oral hygiene routine. With braces, be sure to brush at least twice a day and floss daily—though we recommend brushing and flossing after each meal. For aligners, you must brush and floss after having anything other than water. When you follow these guidelines, you can enjoy a safe and happy holiday season—preventing broken brackets, stained aligners, and cavities. Our Carolina Braces team wishes you and your family a very happy holiday! If you have any questions or need to book an appointment, call us today.