When Valentine’s Day is over, you’ll find that all of the unsold candy is put up for a steep discount at your favorite grocery and convenience stores. This means you’ll have the chance to grab your favorite candies while saving money.
While this can sound great for your mood and your wallet, it’s a recipe for disaster for your teeth!
Don’t worry, though. This Valentine’s Day, you can enjoy some delicious treats while still protecting your teeth. The best way to do this is to make healthier choices when you’re browsing the shelves.
Your family dentist at Heroes Dental has some ideas to help you make the best decisions for the upcoming holiday.
Healthy Treats for Valentine’s Day 2023
1. Fresh Fruit
The absolute best sweet treat for your teeth is definitely fresh fruit. Not only are the nutrients found in fruits great for your teeth, but most fruits also increase saliva production, which helps wash away acids and sugars.
It is these acids and sugars that cause cavities.
If you’d like to throw in a bit more sweetness, chocolate-dipped fruits, like strawberries, are fairly easy to find around Valentine’s Day. However, be sure to avoid dried fruit since these are sticky and the sugars in them will stick to your teeth for longer.
If you want healthier snacks that are good for your teeth, certain types of chocolate are up among the best. The absolute best type to protect your dental health is dark chocolate, as it has been shown in studies to help harden enamel and also has some antiseptic properties.
Just remember to enjoy these sweets in moderation.
3. Sugar-Free Gum
Sugar is the enemy of your dental health as it throws off your dental pH and creates a feeding fest for bacteria in your mouth. Ultimately, anything that is low in sugar and increases saliva production is better for your teeth.
Sugar-free gum, for instance, is one of the better choices. Chewing it can help increase saliva production while keeping your teeth healthier. Just make sure your gum is actually sugar-free by reading the ingredients on the label.
You can always ask your family dentist for any recommendations they may have.
4. Sugar-Free Candy
Along with sugar-free gum, you can also opt for sugar-free candies if you want a healthier option for your teeth.
Consider options like sugar-free hard candy, as these can increase saliva production and are a better alternative to gummy treats that leave unhealthy residue in the crevices of your mouth. You can also find options like sugar-free lollipops so you can still enjoy a favorite treat without risking damage to your dental health.
5. Candy With Nuts
Nuts can help break up the stickiness of other ingredients in many candies. Not only does this help get leftovers off your teeth but the crunchiness will also help scrub your teeth as you eat.
Nuts can also be healthy snacks on their own, especially for your dental health, so don’t be afraid to enjoy them this Valentine’s Day.
Snacks To Eat Sparingly
Unfortunately, there are plenty of snacks that just aren’t good for your dental health. And while you don’t need to cut them out completely, you should greatly reduce how often you eat them.
For instance, sticky and acidic candies tend to be the worst. Treats like sour gummy worms leave acid and sugar on your teeth that are hard to budge without a good scrub and floss. You should also avoid other sticky options like taffy and caramels.
Traditional hard candies are worse for your teeth because of how long they’re in your mouth. If you want to protect your dental health, it’s better to have a few snacks that you can consume quickly instead of keeping them in your mouth for prolonged periods of time.
Visit Your Family Dentist To Keep Your Smile Healthy
Even the healthiest snack choices can’t help if you don’t receive regular dental care. You need to visit your family dentist at least twice a year for a checkup and dental cleaning.
Heroes Dental can help make sure your holiday snacks haven’t hurt your teeth. Don’t wait, schedule your cleaning today.