Practicing good dental hygiene is important throughout the year, but summertime can be a uniquely interesting season to address potential concerns. For most people, summer involves beach days, outdoor gatherings, and poolside lounging – all of which include an increase in sugary foods that can lead to dental problems down the road. Here are some steps you can take to avoid dental summertime slip ups.
Limit Sugary Treats
Ice cream and other frozen treats represent summer for many people. While it’s perfectly fine to enjoy an ice cream now and then, try not to make it an everyday habit. That’s because foods high in sugar can damage your tooth enamel and eventually lead to cavities. Cavities are damaged areas on a tooth’s surface that crack and sometimes cause painful holes in the enamel. Sugar is one of the leading causes of cavities and tooth decay, especially if it’s paired with poor dental hygiene. Keep in mind that ice cream is not the only summertime sweet culprit – sugary fruits like watermelon, grapes, and large amounts of berries can have similar effects on your dental health.
Keep Up Good Dental Hygiene
A simple way to protect and prevent dental problems from occurring is to keep up your good hygiene habits. Remember to brush your teeth at least twice a day, and floss after every meal if possible. You may even want to consider bringing an extra toothbrush to work or school to make it easier to stay consistent even when you’re not at home. Although brushing and flossing properly doesn’t mean you won’t develop cavities, it’s certainly better than not doing it.
Floss to Go
Along with a consistent brushing routine, don’t neglect your mouth when you’re out and about! Always keep an extra floss package in your purse or car for easy access after meals and snacks. Gum disease occurs when plaque and tartar buildup on, behind, and between the teeth. By addressing this issue before it becomes a bigger problem, you greatly reduce your chances of dental complications.
Cut Back on Iced Coffee
Who doesn’t enjoy a refreshing iced coffee on summer mornings? Again, it’s fine to enjoy even regularly, but keep in mind that coffee and other acidic food and drinks can cause enamel erosion over time. If possible, try to brush your teeth soon after drinking your coffee to avoid this issue. If you’re a regular coffee drinker, make sure to follow through with your checkups at your dentist to make sure everything looks good.
Have you been enjoying summertime treats and haven’t been to the dentist lately? It may be time for a dental checkup. Request an appointment with Ascent Dental Care today.