April 11, 2021
Allergy season is in full swing, which means runny noses, itchy eyes, and lots of sneezing. As you combat the effects of dust, animal dander, and pollen, you likely turn to over-the-counter remedies to ease your symptoms. While you might feel a bit better, you may be unknowingly damaging your oral health. You don’t need to place your smile at risk. Here’s how you can manage your allergies while protecting your teeth and gums.
Allergies and Your Oral health
Your allergies don’t directly affect your oral health, but they can lead to several complications that can increase your risk of several issues, such as:
It’s not uncommon for allergies to cause dental pain. While you might be concerned your discomfort is caused by a cavity or another issue, it’s likely the result of sinus pressure. Inflammation of the nasal sinuses can cause an infection, which can cause pressure in the cheekbones and toothaches. If your symptoms worsen when moving your head, it’s likely a sinus infection; however, if your discomfort persists, don’t hesitate to contact your dentist to ensure there isn’t another complication causing the pain.
Many allergy-suffers experience dry mouth, which is a reduced level of saliva. If your mouth becomes too dry, it creates the perfect breeding ground for harmful bacteria that can lead to gum disease and tooth decay. You can help keep your mouth moist by drinking plenty of water to stay hydrated. Chewing a piece of sugarless gum can also increase saliva production to reduce dry mouth.
Your risk of cavities during allergy season can increase for several reasons. Nasal congestion can cause mouth breathing and snoring that can dry out your mouth. As previously mentioned, too little saliva can cause bad bacteria in your mouth to thrive. In addition, many medications used to treat allergies contain sugar. It’s essential you maintain your oral hygiene habits to prevent tooth decay.
Sore throats and allergies often go hand in hand. Dust and pollen can cause excessive mucus production from an allergic reaction. The mucus can run down the back of your throat, causing soreness, coughing, or a tickling sensation. To ease the discomfort, choose sugar-free throat lozenges to avoid cavities. You can also gargle with a salt water mixture to reduce irritation.
Protect Your Oral Health During Allergy Season
Although you might not be feeling your best, it’s crucial you commit to your oral hygiene during allergy season. Brush your teeth at least twice a day and floss every night. Be sure to drink plenty of water to stay hydrated. With a proactive approach, you can keep your smile healthy while managing your allergy symptoms.
About Dr. Marco Caballeros
Dr. Caballeros earned his dental degree from the Texas A&M Baylor College of Dentistry and completed advanced training in general dentistry. His commitment to continuing education has allowed him to expand his services to include many specialties, including cosmetic and sedation dentistry. If you need a qualified dentist you can trust, contact our office today to schedule your consultation.
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