Easter Smile Health
The Ultimate Abbey Road Dental Guide!
Easter is a really lovely time to enjoy activities as a whole family. There are usually lots of amazing events going on, such as Easter hunts, Easter Discos and Easter walking trails.
Here at your St John’s Wood dentist in NW8, we love Easter and wish all of our customers a great time too!
However, there is one element of Easter that isn’t so dentist-friendly, and that is the chocolate and sweeties. Sugary treats at Easter may not seem like a long-term problem, but too much indulgence can contribute to oral issues, and might even be the final straw for a painful dental problem. It could even contribute towards long-term bad habits with eating and general dental care.
With that in mind, Abbey Road Dental wants to give you their ‘ultimate’ guide to keeping your smile healthy and happy over Easter, for optimum Spring oral health:
Before Easter, there is a lot that you can do to set yourself and your family up for smile success during this time. One of the best things that you can do when you are preparing for Easter, for the best chance of keeping your families smiles happy and healthy, is to think carefully about the Easter gifts that you are buying.
Any eggs that contain sweeties such as fondant chocolates or caramels cause sugary substances to stick to the teeth, extending the time over which damage is caused. Avoiding sweets like these in the eggs you buy will help limit the exposure to sugar.
You can also purchase sugar free eggs which these days are very tasty. Dark chocolate is another good idea because it has the lowest sugar and milk content, plus components that are good for you such as cocoa.
It might also be a really good idea to minimise the amount of eggs you buy and replace them with non-chocolate gifts like stuffed toys or games. In fact, that kind of approach works really well for Easter altogether, by making it about more than just the chocolate. Making plans for the Easter holidays that aren’t revolving around the chocolate well before the holidays come, will hopefully help your entire family get excited about Easter for different reasons.
Fun day trips, games and activities are definitely a great way to distract from every supermarket trying to get you to buy endless chocolate eggs! But if you do manage to get the balance right in your Easter planning, it may be that your hard work is being ruined elsewhere.
Do keep an eye on what your kids are consuming at all the Easter activities they are doing at school, clubs and with friends. The chances are they are getting chocolate eggs as prizes and gifts regularly, so do set some rules about consumption and if you can, get them to bring the eggs home so you can control how much they eat and when.
As well as being really clever about the eggs you buy and emphasising other nice aspects of Easter to your kids, there are more direct dental activities you can do to ensure the families smiles get through this time unscathed. Simply checking in on everyone’s dental health regime will be really beneficial to ensuring your teeth and gums are as healthy as possible.
Brushing twice a day for two minutes with the right toothpaste and toothbrush will be hugely beneficial, and it will help get your children into good habits too. But it is important to note that the effects of a very bad diet cannot be reversed or prevented with good oral health.
During Easter, or specifically Easter weekend, it is important to balance chocolate fun with being mindful over the health of your teeth whenever you can. One really great way to do that during Easter weekend is to be specific about when everybody consumes chocolate eggs or Easter related treats. So you may wish to have a ‘no-rules’ Easter Sunday when it is a free for all, and everybody can eat chocolate when they want to. It isn’t for Abbey Road Dental to say what is right for your family, but one day of eating lots of chocolate is unlikely to do long-term damage if you eat a healthy diet most other days of the year.
Some families may choose to only eat chocolate after Easter lunch, which is a really good habit to maintain with eating chocolate in general. When you eat anything sugary your teeth are affected by that sugar for up to an hour after consumption. So if you eat some chocolate and then an hour later eat some more you continue the cycle of damage. Eating chocolate during mealtimes only, limits the effects on your teeth.
Stopping eating chocolate at least an hour before bedtime will also stop the chocolate damaging the teeth overnight, but of course you still need to brush well. To further protect your teeth against the sugar from chocolate, try to encourage drinking water after eating and also snacking on healthy teeth-cleaning foods like apple, celery and carrots. You should also wait an hour before brushing the teeth after you have eaten chocolate, as brushing too soon can spread the sugar and acid around the mouth and do more damage than good. Your tooth enamel is also softer directly after eating.
Lastly, over Easter weekend why not venture outdoors as a family and offset some of the calorific content of all the chocolate you’ve consumed? It will be a nice distraction from eating chocolate and may help chocolate obsessed kiddies place their focus away from their egg collection for a while.
After Easter the key to keeping your oral health in good condition is to avoid scoffing all those tasty eggs in your cupboard as quickly as you can. Instead, could you give away any of your Easter eggs? Or if you want to keep your prized collection try to eat a certain amount at mealtimes every now and again, minimising how much is consumed. Most importantly, if you have seen the families oral health regime slipping over Easter, get straight back into it as soon as you can because prevention is always cheaper, less painful and more convenient than cure when it comes to dental health.
Please Speak To Abbey Road Dental For More Help Maintaining Good Smile Health All Year Round!
If you would like more tips and information about oral health over Easter and all year round, please speak to us at your next checkup or book in for any specific oral health problems. Need to book an appointment? Please call our NW8 clinic on 02076241603 and our friendly team will be more than happy to book you an appointment at a time to suit you.