Plackers recommends simple steps to maintain healthy teeth, gums during stressful holiday season

Three-quarters of American adults report moderate to high stress levels in their everyday lives, and that number increases during the holiday season, according to a recent survey conducted by the American Psychological Association. Plackers, a leading brand of consumer oral care products, says consumers should be aware of how stress can affect their oral health and offers tips on how to avoid dental problems over the holidays.

Two common stress-coping mechanisms - night time teeth grinding and clenching (bruxism) and indulging on sweets - can be detrimental to oral health. Bruxism, estimated to affect up to 65 million adults in the U.S., can exert up to 250 pounds of pressure on teeth and can cause irreversible damage, including worn enamel, loss of tooth shape and flattened surface. Many individuals are unaware they grind or clench their teeth at night until they need to see a dentist due to tooth soreness.

For those overindulgers, the high sugar content from many holiday treats creates an ideal environment in the mouth for bacteria to feed and increase their acid level production, which can lead to tooth decay, mineral loss, and, ultimately, cavities.

Plackers recommends a few simple steps to help maintain healthy teeth and gums during the busy and stressful holiday season:

- Protect teeth against nighttime grinding and clenching with a disposable dental night protector like Plackers Grind No More Dental Night Protector. Available in the oral care aisle at many major retailers, Plackers Grind No More Dental Night Protectors are easy to use, inexpensive, comfortable, require no boiling or molding, and can be used for up to 3 days -- perfect for holiday travel.

- Brush and floss teeth after eating sweets. Plackers offers a variety of dental flossers and oral care accessories that meet a variety of individual needs. If brushing and flossing after eating isn't possible, rinsing the mouth with water also helps.

- Maintain a regular sleep, meal, oral hygiene and exercise schedule. Attending to basic health needs helps in coping with stressful situations during the holidays.

Plackers also recommends maintaining good oral hygiene year-round and visiting the dentist for a cleaning and checkup once every six months or as recommended by a dental professional. For more information on maintaining healthy teeth and gums, visit



The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of News Medical.
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