While you’re focusing on spreading the love this Valentine’s Day, don’t forget about a part of your body that deserves extra TLC: your mouth!

Here are some tips to keep you smiling this Valentine’s Day.

1. Get choosy with your chocolate

The amount of sugar and milk in the lighter varieties of chocolate can contribute to tooth decay, while dark chocolate has more cocoa solids and significantly less sugar per serving. True dark chocolate, which is at least 70% cocoa, contains polyphenols, natural chemicals that can limit oral bacteria. The combination of antioxidants like polyphenols, tannins and flavonoids that naturally occur in the cocoa bean make dark chocolate a safer treat than other sweets.

2. Sip on the right cocktail

If you’re in the mood for spirits, skip the sugary mixers. Those can bind to your teeth and kill all potential chances of a goodnight kiss.

Remember that no matter your libation of choice, alcohol can cause dry mouth.

3. Say “yes” to hydration

Holiday-themed drinks are tempting, but drinking water is the best way to keep your pearly whites fresh. Drink water regularly to wash away food particles, fight dry mouth, limit bacteria and help keep odor under control.

4. Get mean with your greens

Think herbs are only good for garnishes? Think again! Munching on a sprig of fresh basil, mint or cilantro after a meal is an easy, healthy way to mask unpleasant breath and please your palate and date.

5. Skip the after-dinner mints

It’s natural to grab a post-dinner peppermint, but consider another option. Choose sugar-free chewing gum to stimulate saliva, which in turn helps to keep odor-causing bacteria at bay.

Here’s to an amazing Valentine’s Day, with plenty of good oral health habits to go around!


Article originally appeared at: https://www1.deltadentalins.com/

Authors: Delta Dental