Few holidays embody being grateful for what you have more than Thanksgiving! As you and your family sit down to eat, it’s important to consider everything we take for granted in our lives, not least of which is good dental health. Yet many of the holiday’s most popular foods can threaten your teeth in a number of ways, including by discoloring them. This year, Dr. Marianna Beetham recommends protecting your teeth from the many sources of Thanksgiving stains.
Common Stain Sources from Thanksgiving Meals
Every family celebrates Thanksgiving differently in Kirkland, WA. Many of these foods have dark, strong hues that can discolor your teeth, including:
- Balsamic Vinegar – For families that serve salad at the start of Thanksgiving meal, balsamic vinegar is often the dressing of choice, as it’s light enough to not fill you up before you get to the turkey. But just because it leaves little impact on your stomach doesn’t mean it won’t leave its mark on teeth.
- Cranberry Sauce – While cranberry sauce is a Thanksgiving staple, it takes a serious toll on your teeth. Not only from its dark red color, but because it is sugary and acidic. It can wear away at your enamel, so enjoy it in moderation.
- Wine- Red wine is well-known for its tendency to stain teeth, but did you know that white wine can cause discoloration as well? Be careful with these and all other Thanksgiving drinks that are acidic, alcoholic, or dark in color.
- Pie – While pumpkin pie is relatively good for your teeth, blueberry and cherry pie lead to discoloration. Like cranberry sauce, these desserts combine strong colors with acid and sugar, increasing the threat to stains.
- Coffee – It’s common to serve coffee with Thanksgiving pie, but whether that coffee is decaf or regular, it can darken and discolor your teeth.
If you’re eager to keep your teeth healthy but can’t bear to give up these Thanksgiving staples, worry not. You can still have a delicious and full meal without sacrificing your clear, bright smile. The simplest way to do this is by drinkings lots of water and swirl some of that water in your mouth periodically while eating these colorful foods. This washes most of the sugar and acid out of your mouth, preventing them from penetrating the enamel and changing the color for good.
It also makes sense to limit the sheer number of these foods you eat. You don’t have to give up your favorite foods, but if a discoloring food isn’t your favorite, it makes sense to skip it.
No matter how careful you are about avoiding discoloring foods and rinsing your mouth with water, there is always some risk that your teeth will be stained. When this happens, we’re happy to provide professional tooth whitening treatments, along with a range of other services to promote dental health and beauty. For more information, contact us today!