A Winning Smile For Every Athlete

Phoenix_DentistWhile exercise and engaging in sports activities can improve your health in general, special care must be taken to ensure your participation doesn’t put your teeth at risk. Phoenix dentists often care for athletes with sports-related injuries or other conditions that could have been prevented.

Here are several tips from Phoenix cosmetic dentist Dr. Carol Ford for maintaining your smile as an athlete.

Tips For Athletes From A Phoenix Dentist – How to Retain a Winning Smile

  1. If you’re a swimmer… watch out for swimmer’s calculus. Competitive swimmers who spend more than six hours a week in the pool can develop yellow-brown or dark brown stains on their front teeth known as swimmer’s calculus. This is a result of exposure to the chemicals in pool water. If you’re at risk, discuss your situation with your Phoenix dentist. He or she may recommend that  you come in for dental cleanings more frequently to address the additional calculus.
  2. If you play contact sports… get a mouth guard. Phoenix dentists define “contact” rather broadly, including soccer and cycling as well as more obvious sports such as football, baseball and softball. Any physical activity where a blow to the mouth is a possibility is one where a mouth guard should be considered. A custom-fitted mouth guard protects your teeth and gums from injury; experts estimate more than 200,000 injuries are avoided each year by the proper use of mouth guards.
  3. All athletes should… hydrate with water, not energy or sports drinks. Many sports drinks contain large amounts of sugar and acid, both of which have been proven to erode tooth enamel and put you at risk for tooth decay and gum disease. If you cannot quit sports/energy drinks “cold turkey,” limit your consumption, and rinse your mouth with water about an hour after consuming the drink to reduce the risk of teeth damage.
  4. All athletes shouldbrush and floss daily. As the saying goes, the best offense is a good defense. In this instance, even if a dental injury occurs while you’re on the playing field, your teeth are more likely to recover if they are healthy and strong to begin with. Make brushing twice daily and flossing once a day part of your oral health “workout.”

“Phoenix dentists like myself see a lot of athletes in our practice,” says Dr. Ford, who practices in central Phoenix. “A few proactive steps will protect you from experiencing dental problems related to your sports activities.”

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