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Satisfy Your Valentine’s Day Sweet Tooth…But Remember Your Oral Health

On Valentine’s Day, showing our love and appreciation for someone often includes a heart-shaped box of delicious chocolate candy treats.  Believe it or not, Americans buy more than 35 million heart-shaped boxes of chocolates each year.

Here are some other fun facts about Valentine’s Day:

  • About 1 billion Valentine’s Day cards are exchanged in US each year.
  • Women purchase 85% of all valentines.
  • In order of popularity, Valentine’s Day cards are given to teachers, children, mothers, wives, sweethearts and pets.
  • About 3% of pet owners will give Valentine’s Day gifts to their pets.
  • Worldwide, over 50 million roses are given for Valentine’s Day each year.
  • 73% of people who buy flowers for Valentine’s Day are men, while only 27 percent are women.
  • In the Middle Ages, young men and women drew names from a bowl to see who their valentine would be. They would wear these names on their sleeves for one week. To wear your heart on your sleeve now means that it is easy for other people to know how you are feeling.
  • Richard Cadbury invented the first Valentine’s Day candy box in the late 1800s.
  • In Medieval times, girls ate unusual foods on St Valentine’s Day to make them dream of their future husband.

While most of us are aware that consuming large amounts of candy during this holiday can contribute to a larger waistline, we may not think about how sweets impact our oral health.

Impact of Sweets on Your Teeth: Each time bacteria come into contact with sugar in your mouth, acid is produced, which attacks your teeth for at least 20 minutes.  And the bacteria that cause cavities thrive in sweets and sodas. Cavities are caused by tooth decay that destroys the tooth structures and can affect both the enamel and inner layer of the tooth.

 

Sweets That are Toughest on Your Teeth: Some foods and candies create more problems for your teeth than others, including those that are sticky, dissolve slowly or are sucked, such as lollipops, hard candies, toffee, gum drops, taffy, caramel corn, peanut brittle, dried fruit, chocolate-covered raisins and high-energy sports bars.

Keeping Your Teeth Healthy: To maintain good oral health, brush your teeth at least twice a day, use floss daily, eat nutritious foods, limit snacks, including candy, pretzels, and chips, and visit your dentist regularly for cleanings and exams.

Happy Valentine’s Day!!