Are Your Teeth Ready For Winter?

inter is here and unlike some of those southern states we’re in for a cold few months! Minnesota might be nice but it sure is chilly! There are a whole bunch of health concerns that come along with the change in seasons and a lot of those affect your smile!

We see a lot of patients at Northwest Dental Group who are surprisingly unaware of some of the oral health dangers of winter! If you’ve been living without a full understanding of the curse of the cold then we’re here to help explain just what could go wrong over the next few months.

Planning On Playing Winter Sports?

Whether it’s hockey, skiing, skating, or sledding winter sports are a big part of life during a Rochester winter! All those activities come with a lot of risk, especially since they all involve a lot of speed! If you’re not wearing a mouthguard you’re really taking a chance with your teeth!

Proper fitting mouthguard are important to your teeth, so not just any guard will do. You need a custom-built mouthguard from Northwest Dental Group! Our custom athletic mouthguards are designed to hold your teeth in a comfortable position so there’s no slipping or discomfort. They’re easy to wear and provide a lot of protection no matter the game!

Stay Hydrated!

When it’s hot out the first thing you reach for is a glass of ice cold water. It’s easy to stay hydrated during the summer months but when it starts to get colder there’s anything you’d rather drink than cold water! You need it, though – it’s the best way to stay hydrated!

Keeping your children hydrated during the winter is especially difficult. They’re less likely to want to drink water as it is and the cold won’t make it any easier! Hydration is essential for children and adults because of how it helps fight harmful oral bacteria. The bacteria that lives in your mouth produces acids that ruin your teeth and cause decay, but water washes them away and helps produce saliva, which performs the same role. Without a hydrated mouth you get a lot of bacteria and acids that aren’t getting rinsed away – it’s dangerous!

Avoid Too Much Sweet Stuff

This goes along with staying hydrated because of how that oral bacteria produces acid: sugar. When you eat or drink sugary foods your oral bacteria goes to town on it, creating a lot of acid! When you’re dehydrated and you reach for a cup of hot chocolate or sugary coffee you’re making things even worse – there’s not a lot of hydration going on but a ton of sugar!

If you’re indulging in sweets (and who isn’t this time of year!) you need to be sure you’re drinking plenty of water. If you want a warm drink that won’t cause trouble go for tea, without sugar of course. Tea contains compounds called catechins, which actually kill oral bacteria, wash them away, and prevent them from sticking to your teeth! Get warm, get caffeine, and protect your teeth!

Your Teeth Don’t Like To Chatter!

Just like everything else in nature, your teeth expand and contract with the temperature of the air around them. If you go outside and breath through your mouth your teeth will actually contract ever so slightly. You won’t be able to see it but it definitely happens! The reverse is true when you go back inside or keep your mouth closed.

It might not seem like much, especially since you can’t see it happening, but it is enough to actually cause damage to your teeth in the form of microfractures! These invisible cracks in your teeth can cause a lot of pain and temperature sensitivity and can require treatment with crowns or fillings. Be careful out there and be sure to keep your mouth shut on super cold days!

re Always Here To Help!

These and other oral health concerns are what we’re here for. Don’t hesitate to contact us for anything you may need, from emergencies to basic checkups. No matter what your oral care need we’ll work hard to fill it!

You can reach Northwest Dental Group by calling 507-216-6252 or you can request an appointment by filling out our online form. We look forward to seeing you soon!