While regular exercise is good for your health, new research suggests that too much exercise could be bad for your teeth. According to a study published in the Scandinavian Journal of Medicine & Science in Sports, physically active people, particularly endurance runners are at an increased risk of experiencing dental erosion.
35 triathletes and 35 non-athletes took part in the study, which included oral exams and assessments, a questionnaire about oral hygiene and exercise habits, as well as alcohol consumption and sports nutrition. Researchers found that athletes who engaged in more weekly training had more cavities than those who trained less often.
It was also found that those who exercised more produced less saliva and the Ph slightly increased, becoming more acidic. This is a result of breathing through the mouth when you run, which decreases saliva production. Saliva protects your mouth from bacteria, so low rates of saliva make it harder for your mouth to stay clean.
Sports drinks are popular among athletes but the high amount of sugar is bad for your teeth. So, when you mix sport drinks consumption and frequent exercise, you are in essence opening yourself up to potential cavities.
Just because exercise may impact your teeth, it doesn’t mean you have be constantly vigilant and brush your teeth after every work out. The best way to fend off cavities is to stay hydrated. Drinking lots of water will supply your body with enough liquid to produce plenty of saliva, preventing ‘runner’s mouth’. Of course, brush your teeth twice a day as normal, but if you think your breath is really bad after a workout, consider brushing and flossing.
If you have any concerns about your oral health, please contact Pure Smiles for more information.