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The Impact of Face Masks on Your Oral Health

In New York State, we have been required to wear masks to protect ourselves, family members and friends, as well as other people we see during our day to day lives during the COVID-19 pandemic. While wearing a face mask is critical in helping to slow the spread of the virus, it’s impossible to not smell your own breath. While wearing a mask is keeping us safe from COVID-19, it can also result in some unexpected consequences.

Because your nose is covered while you wear your mask, the tendency is to breathe through your mouth and not your nose. That can lead to a dry mouth making it easier for cavities to thrive and periodontal disease to take hold. The build-up of bacteria can produce a bad smell that has been called mask mouth. Wearing a mask for an extended period of time can lead to some of the following dental situations:

  • An increased risk of developing cavities
  • Tooth decay
  • Inflamed gum tissue
  • Bad breath

Because you are wearing a mask a lot of the things you used to do are subconsciously forgotten, like drinking water which leads to dehydration and a dry mouth. Making poor nutritional selections such as drinking beverages that are highly acidic or snacking on foods that are high in sugar also increases the risk of dental damage. 

Dental visits and appointments had been put on hold in March so a lot of people have put off their regularly scheduled dental visits. This means that people are not getting the dental care they need. 

What are some of the things you can do in the meantime?

Adding some of the following steps into your dental routine will help you with your oral hygiene and help prevent dental issues from occurring:

  • Clean your washable mask on a regular basis
  • Regularly replace your disposable mask
  • Practice good oral hygiene by flossing and brushing your teeth regularly
  • Make sure to stay hydrated by drinking water regularly
  • Avoid high-sugar or high-acid beverages 
  • Remove your mask when you are alone whenever possible

One thing you need to pay attention to is the way you are breathing. You need to make sure that you breathe through your nose and not your mouth. You can avoid some of the dental issues that may occur as a result. 

What should you do?

This is a very important time for you to come in for your regular dental cleaning. We can help keep the bacteria in your mouth under control and prevent it from becoming a bigger problem. 

Regular dental cleaning and checkup with the dentists at Clocktower Dental helps us ensure that your teeth and gums are healthy, lets us check for abnormalities, and make sure that your bones are strong. 

Has it been more than six months since you have had a dental checkup? Then, it’s time to make an appointment. Please give us a call at 516-217-0017 or you can click here to contact us.

 

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