Winter is coming and you have already started making the necessary preparations. You dragged out your cold-weather gear weeks ago to check if you had everything. Scarves to protect your lungs from the chill air: check. Hats to keep your ears warm: check. Mittens to prevent frostbitten fingers: check.
However, your teeth often get overlooked in this mad dash of winter prep, which is why the experts at Comfort Dental Group have come up with several things you can do to protect your teeth from frigid winter weather.
Book a dental appointment
Your summer was chock full of activity, so the winter months can be a great time to schedule your next dental appointment. During your visit, you can ask for fluoride treatments that will help restore your natural tooth enamel and protect the sensitive dentin underneath. You can also request advice on brushing techniques, because brushing too hard, too often, or incorrectly can also cause tooth enamel to erode. A good rule of thumb is to brush twice a day for 2 to 3 minutes, holding your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle for best results.
Limit the sweets
It’s the holiday season, which for many people means “Bring on the sweets!” But sugary and acidic foods can wear down the enamel on your teeth and promote tooth decay. Avoiding your holiday treats altogether would be a minor tragedy, so instead, remember to brush, floss, or at least rinse your mouth out with water after eating something acidic or sugary. Also, the longer sugars are in contact with your teeth, the more damage they do, so avoid snacking on sugary foods throughout the day.
Note: Some cold and cough medicines contain sugar, so make sure to choose a sugar-free variety!
Update your toothpaste
Just like many other parts of your body, teeth expand and contract while experiencing extreme changes in temperature. These changes can cause cracks and tiny fissures to form, which can result in increased sensitivity. To help combat tooth pain and sensitivity during winter, try switching up your regular toothpaste for a brand that contains fluoride and is formulated for sensitive teeth. Desensitizing kinds of toothpaste help block the transmission of sensation from the tooth surface to the nerve. After several applications, and with continual use, you should experience a decrease in tooth pain.
Drink lots of water
On top of being an essential component of everyday life, water can be your teeth’s best friend during the winter months. Cold weather tends to kick-start flu season, so people dealing with sinus congestion end up breathing through their mouths instead of their noses. This dries out the natural fluids (saliva) that help rid your mouth of food particles and bacteria, which can lead to an increase in tooth decay and bad breath. Drinking extra water will not only help you stay hydrated but keep your mouth moisturized and your teeth cleaner.
For more tips on protecting your teeth this winter, call 408-249-8888 today!