5 Tips to Protect Your Smile Through Summer
Summer is a time for outdoor family fun. You can’t help but smile when you’re soaking up the sun, playing in the pool, or going for a hike. Make sure you keep smiling with these five tips to protect your smile through summer.
Drink Plenty of Water
Staying well-hydrated is important year-round, but this is especially true in the summer when warm temperatures and outdoor activities make you sweat more. Dehydration negatively affects every part of your body, including your teeth.
Without enough water, you increase your risk for dry mouth. Saliva production is essential for washing away food particles, so dry mouth can be very detrimental. Saliva also continually coats your teeth with a protective, slippery layer that prevents debris from sticking and acids from wearing away your enamel.
To ensure your saliva production remains high, protect your smile and drink plenty of water this summer. It helps to keep a water bottle with you, especially when you go out and about, and sip from it often. Remember, if you start feeling thirsty, you have already entered the first stage of dehydration.
Snack Smart to Protect Your Smile
Being extra active in the summer means you need to have snacks you can take on the go. While it’s easy to reach for sugary sports drinks, chewy candy, and starchy snacks, these don’t do your teeth any favors. Smarter snacks that improve your health and protect your smile include fresh fruits, raw vegetables, dairy products, and nuts and seeds.
If you’re going to the pool or hanging out at the lake, load a small cooler with carrot sticks, cucumber spears, apple slices, tangerines, hardboiled eggs, yogurt, cheese, sunflower seeds, and almonds. These delicious, healthy snacks will fill you up, give you fuel for your family fun activities, and protect your smile in the process.
Protect Your Smile with an Athletic Mouthguard
Every parent’s goal is to avoid a dental emergency during summertime sporting events. If your child plays contact sports, have him or her fitted with a custom athletic mouthguard before the season starts. This device is a highly effective way to protect your smile because it can prevent everything from chipped or knocked out teeth to bit lips or cheeks.
Different types of mouthguards are available, including stock mouthguards, boil-and-bite mouthguards, and custom-fitted mouthguards. Some are used to prevent tooth grinding during the night, while others are made to protect your smile while playing sports.
The best type of mouthguard is a custom one made just for you. This requires a bit higher investment than buying stock or boil-and-bite versions, but the increased comfort and ability to avoid injury are well worth it.
Stick to Your Oral Care Routine
Summer is the time for family vacations! Even when you get off your normal routine while traveling or having extended family in town, that’s no excuse to become lax in your oral care routine.
Always make it a priority to brush and floss every night, and brush again in the morning. It’s not good enough to miss a night and tell yourself, “I’ll brush extra good tomorrow.” This creates bad habits that lead to more cavities and gum disease.
If you go on a trip, pack your toothbrush with care. It’s ideal to have a carrying case with ventilation holes. Even then, you should wait until your toothbrush is as dry as possible before packing it. Moisture lingering on the bristles of a toothbrush encourage mold growth, which you definitely don’t want in your mouth!
Get a Dental Checkup
Has it been more than six months since your last trip to the dentist? It’s wise to make time for a dental checkup before your upcoming vacation. Just like getting your car tuned-up before a road trip, having your teeth inspected gives you peace of mind that a dental emergency is unlikely to occur while you’re out of town.
It’s also wise to schedule dental appointments for your children before they return to school in the fall. This is the perfect time to make sure your kids did a good job of keeping up with their oral care routines over the summer before the hectic back-to-school season arrives.
Dr. Ania is ready to help you or your child protect your smile this summer! Whether you are looking for a custom mouthguard, have a dental emergency you need to address, or want to schedule your family’s next dental appointments, we’re here for you. Our office is conveniently located on Canyon Blvd in Boulder.
For more tips to protect your smile, or to schedule an appointment, please call Dr. Ania’s dentist office today at (303) 872-9940.