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How Does Your Workout Affect Your Smile? Athletes and Oral Health

February 7, 2015

451855347While your teeth may not be the first things you think of as you get ready to hit the gym, a recent study provides evidence that your oral health actually should be something you consider alongside your fitness routine. At Complete Cosmetic Care Dentistry in Glenpool, OK, Dr. Parnam Mohanna and Dr. Dalia Georgy strive to provide their patients with valuable information to keep their smiles healthy and strong, and today we’d like to share the results of this study in hopes that it will benefit you.

Do Athletes Get More Cavities?

A study published in the Scandinavian Journal of Medicine and Science in Sports sought to uncover a reason for the higher incidence of cavities in athletes, particularly runners. What they found was surprising. The mouths of the athletes tested were consistently impacted by a diminished pH level, a problem that has been long linked to a higher risk for tooth decay. The lowered pH levels were attributed to a diet high in carbohydrates, primarily from sports drinks and gels as well as nutrition bars. While these are popular staples for runners and other athletes, overconsumption proved potentially harmful to oral health.

Another anomaly was found in saliva levels. Athletes tested following a strenuous workout were found to have decreased levels of saliva in their mouths, an issue that has been known to promote tooth decay and periodontal disease. Saliva is a necessary component of oral health, helping to wash away acid-producing bacteria.

While we’d never suggest that our athletic patients stop working out in favor of protecting their oral health, this study does support a more stringent hygiene routine at home. Also, as always, it is crucial to the continued health of your teeth and gums that you schedule a visit to our office for an exam and professional cleaning at least once every six months.

Healthy Mouth, Healthy Body

Exercise is a vital part of a healthy lifestyle, just as are your routine visits to our dental office. If it has been more than six months since your last visit, please contact us today to schedule your appointment with Dr. Georgy and Dr. Mohanna. Our caring, experienced staff looks forward to helping you achieve and maintain a healthy, beautiful smile for life. Conveniently located in Glenpool, OK, our practice proudly serves the surrounding areas of Tulsa, Jenks, Bixby, Okmulgee, Sapulpa, Keifer, Mounds, and beyond.

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