Saint Louis Dentists Help Patients Protect Their Smiles From Environmental Damage

Written by Dr. Grayem on Mar 11, 2019

Every day, your teeth are exposed to all kinds of substances, and some of these can lead to damage or aesthetic changes over time. There is no way to completely shield your teeth from environmental threats, but there are things that you can do to minimize the amount damage your smile sustains. Keep reading to learn more from our Saint Louis dentists!

Know Your Enemy

The first thing that you have to do is to get a better idea of what kinds of materials can alter your smile. Once you are armed with this information, you’ll be empowered to make healthy decisions for your smile. 

  • Acidic substances—acid temporarily weakens your dental enamel, leaving it susceptible to eroding, developing chips and cracks, and developing cavities. Things like citrus fruits, fruit juices, wine, coffee, and soda are quite acidic.
  • Sugars—the oral bacteria in your mouth love to feed on sugars; they use sugar to get the energy they need to grow and multiply.
  • Deeply colored foods and drinks—saturated, richly colored foods and drinks can cause dental discoloration over time.
  • Tobacco products—simply put, tobacco is the number one culprit when it comes to causing environmental dental damage.

Develop Good Habits 

Obviously, the best thing to do in some cases is to minimize, or eliminate, your exposure to harmful environmental substances. Cutting tobacco out of your life, for example, will only help your overall health and your smile. Likewise, minimizing sugars and refined carbohydrates in your diet is a good idea generally speaking.

However, this philosophy doesn’t work for everything. What about acid exposure from eating fruits? Or potential staining caused by deeply colored vegetables? You can…

  • Rinse your smile with water after eating or drinking anything other than water
  • Follow all of your dentist’s recommendations when it comes to you daily oral hygiene routine
  • Wait to brush your smile for at least 20 to 30 minutes after acid exposure (brushing too quickly can lead to inadvertent tooth damage. 

Preventive dental plans are just as personal and unique as the patients who use them. Give our Saint Louis dentists a call to schedule a consultation with our team!