Holiday meals are delicious, but they can also be damaging to your teeth. There are many foods that people consume at the holidays that can cause stains and other types of damage to their tooth enamel. Knowing what foods can stain your teeth and also what you can do to protect your teeth can help you keep your teeth looking their best this holiday season.
What foods can cause stains on your teeth at holiday meals?
Berry dishes. Berry dishes can stain your teeth just like they stain your clothes, because your porous tooth enamel can absorb the intense pigments from berries. Cranberry sauce, berry pie, and berry-topped cheesecakes all can be damaging to your teeth.
Coffee and tea. Coffee and tea can stain your teeth a light yellow or brown color. This is even true of coffee that is lightened with cream, because the same acids and pigments that would stain your teeth in black coffee are still present in coffee with cream.
Red and white wine. It's expected that red wine would stain your teeth, but many people are surprised to learn that white wine can also cause stains. The problem with white wine is that it's acidic, so drinking white wine can etch your teeth. This makes your teeth vulnerable to stains from other darker colored drinks, like coffee and tea.
Frosting with dye. The dye in frosting is meant to spread color around, which means that your teeth are vulnerable to staining when you consume bright colorful frostings found on cakes, cookies and cupcakes.
What can you do to prevent stains on your teeth during holiday meals?
There are many things you can do to prevent stains.
Brush your teeth before eating. Brushing your teeth before eating will help make your teeth slick, which will prevent foods from sticking to the enamel.
Swish with water during meals. Swishing with water will help wash off your teeth as you're eating, thus preventing your tooth enamel from absorbing stains.
See your family or cosmetic dentist this holiday season. The goal of family and cosmetic dentistry is to keep your teeth looking beautiful and healthy. Seeing your family or cosmetic dentist before the holidays will help make your teeth shiny and polished before your holiday meals.
As you get ready for your holiday celebrations, make an appointment at your dentist. While getting your teeth cleaned, talk to your dentist about other strategies that can help you avoid tooth stains this holiday season.