The Best and Worst Tailgating Treats For Your Teeth
It’s finally football season, and I know how much my patients enjoy a good tailgate. Whether you pack up the SUV and drive to Philly for an Eagles game or have a party in your backyard, tailgating is a great way to get together with friends and family and enjoy America’s other favorite pastime. And while I’m sure your teeth are the last thing on your mind, as your dentist, it’s my duty to educate you on how those beloved tailgate foods and drinks affect your teeth. Read on to find out more.
One of the best parts of tailgating is the food. Grilled sausages, chips and dip, maybe some pierogies…all make for fantastic pre-game fare. For the sake of your teeth, though, consider including the following on your tailgate table:
- Fruits and Veggies – Not only are these good for you, they naturally clean your teeth as you chew them! Most of your tailgating companions will appreciate having a healthier option in addition to the indulgences.
- Dairy Products – Dairy supports your teeth and bones in a number of ways, plus, it’s just tasty. Have a cheese tray on the table and consider using Greek yogurt to make a delicious dip that accompanies the fruits and vegetables you serve.
- Tea – Water is 100% necessary to ensure that everyone stays hydrated, but tea is a great alternative. Green or black, tea contains polyphenols that halt bacteria production.
I enjoy tailgate foods as much as the next person, but some things should be enjoyed in moderation. If you serve the following foods at your party, then enjoy them in moderation:
- Starchy Foods – Potato chips, hamburger buns, and crackers are just some of the foods that tend to get stuck in your teeth. When they hang out in the cracks and crevices of your smile, their sugars contribute to decay. After you enjoy these foods, enjoy a nice carrot or apple to help naturally clean your mouth.
- Soft Drinks – Sugar + Acidity = Bad news for your teeth. If you enjoy soft drinks, then be sure to drink some water afterwards to rinse the bad stuff off of your teeth.
- Alcohol – Alcohol dries out your mouth, which slows the production of saliva. As one of your bodies natural defenses against decay, saliva cleans your teeth. When your mouth is dry, sugars, starches, and other debris collect on your teeth and wreak havoc. We know the following suggestion may not be a fan favorite at your tailgate, but you should follow each beer or cocktail with water to stave off the ill-effects.
Eagles or Steelers, Phillies or Pirates, sports bring us together. When you’re enjoying a tailgate with your friends and family, your first priority is fun. If you worry that your sports-related indulgences have affected your smile, then let someone whose priority is dental health take over. Contact Wayne Dental Care today to schedule an appointment.