How to keep your smile bright in the season of sugary drinks

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December 21st, 2018

Graphic of a cup of hot chocolate

The holidays are just around the corner – which means it’s the perfect time to talk about the tasty drinks that help make the fall season so delicious. Pumpkin spiced lattes and eggnog are wonderful, but frequent consumption of sugary drinks can be harmful to teeth. In fact, repeated exposure to sugar plays a major role in the tooth decay process.

We break down the sugar content of some of our favorite holiday drinks – and how to keep your mouth healthy when you drink them!

  • Champagne – ½ tsp of sugar
  • Candy Cane Cocktail – 4½ tsp of sugar
  • Eggnog – 5 tsp of sugar
  • Hot chocolate – 6 tsp of sugar
  • Hot buttered rum – 7 tsp of sugar
  • Peppermint mocha – 10½ tsp of sugar
  • Hot apple cider: 16 tsp of sugar

Tips for when you indulge

  • Brush your teeth after drinking. If brushing isn’t possible at the time, rinse or swish with water.
  • Have the drinks with a meal or at one time instead of sipping throughout the day.
  • Chew sugar-free gum after drinking.
  • Drink through a straw. A straw will help send the drink to the back of your throat rather than it sitting around your teeth.
  • But avoid chewing ice. Chewing ice can cause the teeth to crack, fracture or chip. It can also wear down enamel and increase sensitivity to hot and cold foods.

When it comes to alcoholic drinks, moderation and mindfulness are key. Drink what you enjoy, drink slowly, and savor each sip.