‘Tis the season to indulge, but what’s best drink to order for an evening out? We asked New York City dentist Dr. Steven Davidowitz for his suggestions on what to sip this season.

Follow this advice and these tips will last long past the holidays. So pour yourself a drink and cheers to having some festive fun with a bright smile to match. 

Beer 

We love it, but our teeth don’t. Beer’s low PH means it’s highly acidic and a few pints can create what Dr. Davidowitz calls an “acidic bath.” Ah, gross. Also, the darker the brew, the more likely it is to stain your teeth. Your best bet: a low-carb, “light” option.

Wine

Say it ain’t so! Wine makes the naughty list because of its acidic nature. Opt for white for a better chance of skipping stains. The tannins in red can leave a mark.

Mixed drinks

For a double shot of trouble, pour yourself one of these favorites. We’re talking margaritas, vodka cranberry, Jack and Coke. The high sugar content paired with acidity means a one-two punch for your teeth. An idea: Ditch the sugary mixers for less acidity and less sugar, not to mention a stronger drink.

Eggnog

Fat and sugar may make eggnog delicious, but that tasty fat creates a thickness on your teeth that allows sugar to stick around and feed bacteria. Alternate your eggnog with water to lessen the chances of residue building up.

 

Related: Read more about top treatments for the holidays.

 

No matter what you drink, Dr. Davidowitz recommends these tips to keep cavities from cramping your holiday style:

Try gum 

The sugarless variety, of course. Chewing a little can help stimulate saliva to water down sugars and acids. You’re trying to avoid having a dry mouth, which is a safe harbor for bacterial growth.

Don’t forget water 

Switching between alcohol and water throughout the night won’t just help your oral hygiene. Bonus: It’s a good way to stave off hangovers, too.

Don’t slack on your teeth

A busy holiday schedule is no excuse to skip regular brushing, flossing, and dental appointments. Plus, clean teeth are smoother, making it harder for stains and sugars to stick around.

Elbow grease 

If you notice some post-party staining, give your teeth an extra scrub, but go easy on those gums. You can also try at-home whitening strips for a little extra shine.

Does your smile need a little help? Find a dentist near you.