Sitting around the table with family and friends while eating a plate of delicious, traditional Thanksgiving food is something the we look forward to all year long. Unfortunately, some of those foods are extremely harmful to your teeth. Swap out a few of the worst Thanksgiving foods and your teeth will be thankful.

Turkey Bones

If you enjoy eating the turkey leg, be aware of scraping your teeth against the bone. The hard bone can chip and break teeth, making a trip to the general dentist necessary. Never attempt to bite the meat off of the bone with your back molars, as this can cause fillings or crowns to become loose. Instead of eating meat off of the bone, try cutting it off first and then eating it with a fork.

Pecan Pie

This tempting dessert has 31 grams of sugar per slice, not including the amount of sugar in the whipped cream or ice cream that is often served alongside it. Sugar is used by plaque as energy; when too much sugar is eaten, tooth decay and cavities may result. In addition to the high sugar content, the pecans themselves pose a risk to teeth as they can become wedged in-between teeth and require help for removal from your local dentist office. Try eating a slice of pumpkin pie instead and skip the creamy sides.

Dried Fruits

Apricots, prunes and raisins often appear in a nut-and-fruit tray served as a Thanksgiving appetizer. Though many people believe that dried fruits are a healthier option, their concentrated sugar content makes teeth susceptible to decay. Chewy or sticky foods, such as dried fruits, also stay on the teeth longer and are more difficult to remove without proper teeth cleaning. Look for fresh fruits, vegetables or soft cheeses to snack on instead while waiting for the big meal.


Many people enjoy a glass of wine with their Thanksgiving dinner. Unfortunately, the high acid content in alcohol erodes the teeth over time. Alcohol also dehydrates the mouth, removing saliva that works to wash and protect the teeth. Additionally, red wine also harms the teeth because the dark tint may stain your pearly whites over time. Always drink a glass of water after drinking alcohol in order to rinse your mouth and decrease your risk of dehydration.

Contact your general dentist at your local dentist office today. The friendly and professional dentists and staff are experts in teeth cleaning after indulging during the Thanksgiving holiday.

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Uptown Charlotte Dentistry & Orthodontics

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