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Brushing your teeth? Better before sleep than after dinner 

Beautiful big family sitting at the table celebrating Christmas together at home. Senior woman and her granddaughter clinking glasses of red wine.

With Christmas around the corner and all the meals, lunches and dinners associated with it, it is important to take into account the importance of taking care of teeth so as not to end the season with infections, breakages or unnecessary pain. If you also already wear a denture, orthodontics or implants, you should reinforce hygiene and caution.

To begin with, a fact that was made public in mid-November and that reflects the importance of oral hygiene. In Denmark, a nurse in training, Anita Tracey, has carried out an experiment in hospital patients based on oral hygiene. Brushing their teeth four times before an intervention and reinforcing hygiene during the post-operative period, patients with coronary and pulmonary diseases reduced their hospital infections from 12.5% to 6.2%, that is, by half. If we add to this that, after a year in Europe, 37,000 people die due to hospital infections, this experiment is very important.

The Artedental hygienist team, in Puerto de la Cruz, gives us a series of tips to be prepared on these dates, based on the main problems that are often encountered during and after the Christmas holidays.

Since I could not start any other way, the most important guideline is to brush your teeth before going to bed. Why not after eating? Because we may have ingested acids that, with the brush brushing, can damage the enamel, weakening the teeth and making them more sensitive. That is why it will be better to do it just before sleep and when it has been at least an hour after the meal. Adapting to a routine in this case is fundamental. Rinse the mouth with water or consume sugar-free gum for the production of saliva also reduces the effect of acids.

Avoid sweets

Sugar is one of the great enemies of oral health, causing cavities, the most common pathology in dentistry. Therefore, if you are going to eat sweets, it is better to do so during meals than to distribute your consumption throughout the day, when you will not brush your teeth. Of course, if you can, you have to avoid soft drinks with sugar at all costs.

Caution with hard foods.

Biting hard nougat, nuts, seafood or even ice cubes can cause slight breakages that crack the teeth. These cracks can increase with time and fracture or function as a waste settlement and therefore promote infections. Fractures also damage enamel, fillings, crowns and bridges.

Beware of products that stain enamel.

Certain foods contain chromogen, an element that adheres to enamel and stain teeth. If they are going to indulge, the best thing is extreme hygiene. Some of them are wine, coffee, certain dark sauces such as soy or cola.

Visit the dentist. It is essential to go to the dentist at least once a year for prevention, but if at this time you feel any pain or discomfort, do not let it go. Visits to professionals resolve problems in advance that will get worse over time, and a pain is already a sign that something is not right in the mouth.