Is Your Endurance Training Affecting Your Dental Health?
Posted on 3/17/2016 by Dr. Call
If you are an endurance athlete, you may have experienced problems with your teeth throughout the training.
Good oral health is important for both your overall health and your athletic performance, but unfortunately, many people take their teeth for granted. Find out how your training regimen might be impacting your oral health and what you can do about it.
Endurance Training and Dental Erosion
Endurance athletes tend to have an increased risk for enamel erosion than other people for two main reasons:
Heavy mouth breathing. During endurance training, you will likely breathe quite heavily out of your mouth. This can reduce the flow of saliva, giving bacteria more opportunity to breed. In fact, a study published in a 2014 edition of The Scandinavian Journal of Sports Medicine showed that triathletes had greater tooth enamel erosion than the control group, and these athletes also had significantly lower saliva levels with increased pH during exercise. The longer that an athlete spent training, the greater the instances of cavities, tartar, plaque, and erosion became.
Sugary sports drinks. While heavy mouth breathing was one of the top causes of dental problems in endurance athletes, frequently drinking sports drinks also proved to be a problem. Most sports drinks are high in sugar and citric acid, both of which can cause the tooth enamel to erode. When the enamel is compromised, the tooth will be more susceptible to the buildup of bacteria that can lead to gum disease, cavities, inflammation, and infection.
Protect Your Oral Health While Training
There are ways that you can protect and improve your oral health even if you are going through endurance training. Make sure you are brushing and flossing daily and that you visit your dentist 2-3 times per year. Work on breathing through your nose, and choose water over sugary sports drinks.
Additionally, if you have any nagging tooth pain or discomfort, be sure to contact our dental office right away.
Century Dental Dr. Jefferson Call, DMD & Dr. Dix Densley, DDS
Century Dental, 2831 SE Cornelius Pass Rd, Hillsboro, OR, 97123-6753 - Related Terms: dentist Hillsboro OR•
Dr. Dix Densley Hillsboro OR•
Dr. Jeff Call Hillsboro OR•
(971) 708-1608• www.centurydentalllc.com• 1/23/2020