Have you been told you have lots of new cavities (aka: caries) that you did not expect! Dental caries are caused by bacteria that live in our mouths that stick to our teeth. When we consume sugar containing substances this causes these bacteria to produce acids that decay our teeth. During the Christmas Season we tend to consume more sugary foods but we also are exposed to more cold viruses and the associated coughs that come with them. Cough drops can contain sugar and because they remain in our mouths for extended periods of time they can be a significant cause of dental caries. It is important to note that even small quantities of sugar can cause tooth decay if they are in contact with our teeth for a long time. So try to minimize the amount of sugar containing foods and beverages that you consume in between meals. If you use cough drops or breath mints make sure they are sugar free. If your dentist tells you that you have a lot of new cavities look for new sources of sugar that you may be consuming and try to minimize your exposure. If you are seeing a Dentist for the 1st time and you are told you have a lot of cavities that you did not expect you may also want to consider a second opinion.