Ahhh… it’s summer time again! Time for us to kick back, spend some time enjoying the great outdoors. In Southwest Florida, we’re lucky that there are so many ways to enjoy our natural resources. During the summer months, most people are concerned with their skincare routine—which is extremely important—but what about dental care?
Outdoor activities can pose certain dangers to your teeth. Participating in sports like biking or kayaking means you could fall, have an accident or get hit in the mouth, which can result in a chipped or lost tooth. In some situations, it may be helpful for you to wear a mouth guard or some other protection for your teeth, ensuring you don’t injure your mouth, leaving your teeth untouched!
Grinding your teeth
It is common for people who are playing sports to clench their jaw or grind their teeth under pressure—this can deteriorate enamel and tooth structure, sometimes requiring cosmetic dental procedures such as crowns, veneers, or dentures. This can also cause TMJ, Temporomandibular joint dysfunction. Using a mouth guard can help with this issue.
Using your teeth for things other than chewing
We’ve all done it—you’re laying on the beach, trying to open your snack, and you use your teeth. Your teeth were made for chewing, not for tearing open things. It’s always better to make sure that you bring scissors with you, but if you can’t, use your jaw muscles to help open the bag, not only your teeth!
Fruit & Sweets
During the summertime, we’re used to having treats to help us cool down—ice cream, popsicles, fresh fruit and soft drinks. These types of sugary goodies can actually harm our teeth because the sugar sits on top of teeth, eventually eroding enamel and causing cavities. While it’s not practical to carry a toothbrush with you to the beach, try rinsing out your mouth with some water after eating snacks. This can get some of the sugar off your teeth, as well as keep food from getting stuck in-between them. Apples and pears may cause less decay because these fruits are less acidic.
Don’t forget your dental care essentials
Having fun keeps us busy—so busy we might forget to do our daily dental care routine! When you go on vacation, don’t forget to pack your toothbrush, fluoride toothpaste, floss, and fluoride mouth wash. If you wait until you’re extremely tried to brush your teeth, change up your routine a bit! Try brushing your teeth after dinner so when you’re finally tired, you can go straight to bed.
Wear lip balm with an SPF of 15 (at least)
Lips are more sensitive to burning than other parts of your body, but some people may overlook them when applying sunscreen. Don’t forget your sunscreen, too!
While it’s important to be conscientious about your dental care routine, don’t forget to make some memories and enjoy the summer sunshine! We love seeing our patients happy and healthy, so as this summer comes to a close, be sure to schedule an examination and a cleaning. Contact us today to schedule! 239-936-0597