You know its allergy season when you wake up with a scratchy throat, swollen eyes, and absolutely no will to get out of bed and start getting ready for work. Seasonal allergies don’t just make you feel terrible, they can also affect your oral health. Going to see your dentist for your regular checkup and cleaning may not be your top priority while your body’s waging war on pollen, but it may be more important than you think. Your family dentist in Virginia Beach reveals how seasonal allergies could be affecting your smile.
How Can Seasonal Allergies Affect Your Oral Health?
Common symptoms of seasonal allergies such as dry mouth, sore throat, and sinus pressure, can cause your oral health to decline. Knowing how these symptoms can affect your gums could be the key to keeping your health up-to-par this allergy season:
- Sinus pressure is a common symptom of your body battling the dust and pollen in the air. The discomfort is caused by the hollow spaces in your head being filled with mucus. This results in aching and pain. When pressure is placed on the sinuses located above your mouth, it can push down on the roots of your molars and cause sensitivity to hot and cold.
- Dry mouth can be caused by a couple of different factors during allergy season. First, if your nose is stuffed up, it can cause you to need to breathe through your mouth more often. Second, if you’re taking antihistamines, dry mouth could be a side effect. This symptom can make you more susceptible to developing cavities and infections. When there’s not enough saliva being produced, there’s nothing in your mouth to rinse away harmful bacteria and food particles.
- Sore throat or irritation is caused by postnasal drip and can result in bad breath. Because it’s in your throat, brushing and flossing won’t be very helpful in getting rid of the stink.
How Can You Protect Your Oral Health During Allergy Season?
Controlling your symptoms can not only provide you with relief, but also help ward off the effects they have on your oral health. This allergy season, defend your mouth by following these tips:
- Drink plenty of water to help keep your mouth and body hydrated. This will help fight against dry mouth and aid your body in flushing out mucus.
- Gargle with saltwater to get mucus out of your sinuses and help cut down on harmful bacteria in your mouth and throat. This will reduce plaque and tame your bad breath. Dissolving a tablespoon of salt into a glass of warm water will do the trick!
- Take allergy medicine to help control your symptoms and provide you with relief. This can also help reduce the impact that the symptoms have on your oral health. You may consult your doctor about recommending a different one if the medication you’re using is causing you to have dry mouth.
Visiting your dentist in Virginia Beach for your semi-annual checkups and cleanings can ensure that your gums and teeth are in good health. If you’re experiencing any discomfort or symptoms, they will
About the Author
Dr. Vinita Folck enjoys learning about each of her patients and feeling connected to them. She takes pride in creating a fun and comfortable environment where everyone can learn about their dental health while being treated like family. As an active member of 5 professional organizations, she is focused on providing each of her patients with the highest quality of care. For any questions or to schedule a checkup and cleaning, visit Smile by Design’s website or contact 757-499-9639.