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    Just How Much Do We Love Our Pumpkin Spice Lattes?

    New Analysis of Seasonal Drink Intake Highlights Need to Protect Oral Health

    Boston – November is not just about Thanksgiving, it is also about seasonal delights that are not always great for our health. But, just how much do we love our pumpkin spice lattes? Today, Delta Dental Plans Association released a new survey of American adults that has the answers. 

    Most Americans love them

    According to the survey, a whopping 72% of all American adults  more than 175 million people – consume seasonal beverages such as pumpkin spice lattes and caramel apple ciders as the colder months roll in.
    Regionally, adults in the Northeast imbibe the least at 68%, with those in the Midwest at the top (78%) followed by the West (77%), and the South (77%).
    “In Massachusetts, we may love these seasonal drinks slightly less than the rest of the country, but it is still important to remember our oral health and our overall health this time of year,” said Dennis Leonard, president of Delta Dental of Massachusetts. “We protect ourselves from weather with coats and hats, but this fall and winter, let’s work on protecting our mouth, too.” 
    Those who do indulge, do so quite often: 39% of respondents who say they do drink seasonal beverages, drink them at least once a week.
    Millennials are top consumers. Nearly 9 out of 10 respondents ages 18-34 consume seasonal drinks, compared to 7 in 10 of those ages 35 and up. And, more than half of millennials who drink seasonal beverages do so at least once a week, compared to less than a third of their older counterparts.   
    Parents are much more likely than adults without children (53% v. 33%) to consume such a drink at least once a week, and seasonal drinks are more popular among women overall.
    So what can be done to protect our oral health and overall health?

    Try these quick tips to combat seasonal beverage sugar:

    • If you frequently enjoy fall beverages, consider decreasing the number of “pumps” of flavoring added to your drinks to cut back on some of the sugar (a little over one teaspoon per pump).
    • Try to limit the amount of other sugary foods you consume throughout the day if you are going to treat yourself to a fall beverage.
    • Enjoy your fall beverage with a meal, not as a standalone treat. That way, other foods will help keep the sugar from clinging inside your mouth.
    • Brush your teeth for two minutes with fluoride toothpaste soon after finishing the beverage, if possible.
    • If you can’t brush your teeth, chew a sugar-free gum to help neutralize the acids that attack your teeth.
    • Follow sugary beverages with a glass of water to help wash sugar and acid from your teeth.

    About the survey: The survey was conducted by Kelton Global between October 26th and 29th, 2015 among 1,013 nationally representative Americans 18+. The margin of error is +/-3.1 percent.