Summertime is the time of year where school is out and families get to spend a lot more time together. This means that normal household routines may change with holidays and sightseeing trips taking everyone away from home for different periods of time.
One of the daily routines that can suffer from this break in the regular pattern is dental hygiene. Let’s face it; it is easy to skip brushing and flossing if you are relaxing near a campfire after a huge BBQ dinner in the great outdoors. However, one of the things you should not skip or relax about during summer is your daily dental routine.
Fortunately, there are ways to keep your oral health in check during the summer.Here are 8 oral hygiene tips for summer.
Oral Health Tips For The Summer Season
1. Introduce A Summer Routine
Although you will likely want to relax on some of the scheduling tasks that normally play into the day-to-day activities of your family, you can also put a summer-only routine in place. An example on how to do this is to have a short list of tasks that must be completed before anyone leaves the house for a day on the beach or whatever summer activity beckons. That list can include such items as: make your bed, put away your sleep clothes, brush your teeth, have a shower, etc. The same idea can be applied before bedtime as well to keep everyone on track.
2. Replace The Existing Hygiene Tools
Dental professionals suggest that toothbrushes should be replaced every three to four months. Using summer as a catalyst, you can take a trip to the local pharmacy with your family and let everyone pick out a new toothbrush. There are so many new colors and designs that by getting everyone involved in the switch to new oral health gear, they are more likely to use them right away. Don’t forget to replace yours as well and to set an example but using it daily.
3. Stock Up On Healthy Treats
Since you will not have as much control over the snacks your family will have access to outside of summertime, you can take back control in your home. All you need to do is ensure that there are plenty of healthy snacks available at all times. Sure, the odd sweet treat won’t cause too much harm, but by having a good assortment of fresh fruits and vegetables handy, you can fight the cravings for those sweet treats. Have everyone join you on grocery day to select their favorite healthy snacks and that will ensure they will eat them instead of something you picked which they didn’t like as much.
4. Start Summer Off With A Check Up
Although it may seem an unlikely thing to do during summer, dental visits actually increase as families book appointments for check ups prior to taking long vacations. Even if a holiday is not part of your summer, you can still enjoy it knowing that everyone has had a dental check up and a cleaning. Plus, no one wants to have to suffer with a toothache caused by a cavity during summer break, so a visit to the dentist early in the summer can mean more fun in the sun.
5. Drink Plenty of Tap Water
Keeping your body hydrated during summer can prevent many different conditions from developing. However, one extra benefit to drinking a lot of water daily is that it will help to keep your mouth moist and fight the oral conditions that are attractive to bacteria growth. Essentially, when you drink water you are flushing your mouth of bacteria. When you drink tap water, you are also giving your teeth a treat as the fluoride in tap water helps to fight tooth decay.
6. If You Must, Try Using A Straw
If your summer is filled with beverages that are acidic, you can still enjoy them and give your teeth a fighting chance. All you have to do is consume those drinks with a straw. What that does is it reduces the amount of contact the acidic compounds have with your teeth. You still get to have your favorite beverages but with a straw, you reduce the potential of damage resulting from the acids on tooth enamel. Be sure to use eco-friendly paper straws.
7. Start Drinking Tea For A Change
If you are trying to kick the high sugar drink habit, you can move to drinking tea during the summer. What you may not know about tea is that it contains compounds that actually suppress bacteria which can cause gum disease and tooth decay if left unchecked. Plus, tea is a great beverage consumed hot or cold. You can drink tea frequently and it’ll be good for your oral healthy during the summer. But remember to not add any additional sugar to your cup of tea.
8.Practice Safety First
There are other threats to your oral health besides what you eat or drink. As summertime is an active time for most of us, it also means there is the increased risk of a sports injury that can impact your mouth, teeth and gums. However, there are ways to prevent this from happening. If you must participate in sporting activities that could result in damage to your mouth, be sure to wear protective gear. This can be a mouth guard or a mask that prevents trauma to your face.
As casual as your days may become during summer, you still need to take care of your oral health. Even if you are away from home and don’t have access to a toothbrush at the very least you can always carry some dental floss with you. By flossing daily it helps to remove food particles that get stuck between teeth and can cause a great deal of damage. Chew sugarless gum if you miss a brushing day to at least give you a fighting chance to keep bacteria at bay.
Enjoying your summer doesn’t mean skipping all of your daily chores but if you keep up on your dental hygiene, you will be able to enjoy your summer more without a dental emergency getting in the way.
About the Author:
Jade Roberts owns and operates False Teeth Options which provides valuable information and resources regarding false teeth, dental implants, and cosmetic dentistry to people of all ages.