Summer. It’s great…isn’t it?
Well, actually, no.
Whilst there’s much to love about the sunshine season – and certainly plenty to smile about – when it comes to teeth, it’s not all good times. So, as you soak up the rays, make sure topping up sun cream isn’t your only health consideration.
Here experts at Harley Street Smile Clinic, take a look at the surprising impact summer can have on oral health – and how you can make sure your smile is well looked after.
The benefits of summer:
· More vitamin D
After a winter of hiding away and wrapping up in woollies, summer allows our bodies to soak up some long overdue vitamin D from the sun’s rays. Essential in helping our bodies to absorb calcium, which is key for healthy bones and teeth.
· Drinking water
We all know we’re supposed to drink plenty of water – 6 to 8 glasses a day – but how many of us actually do? Somehow a coffee always seems a more desirable option on a cold, gloomy day.
Not so when it warms up though. As temperatures soar, we naturally reach for a cold drink to quench thirst and stay cool, making keeping hydrated on the good stuff much easier.
· Healthy glow
Nothing sets off a smile quite like a sun-kissed glow. And that summer tan will make teeth appear whiter, brighter, and all-round healthier.
Does anything say summer quite like a bowl of fresh strawberries? Sweet and tasty, they’re also great at reducing inflammation and provide a source of collagen which can help to fight against gum disease. Bonus!
Things to be aware of:
· Sunburnt lips
Pride yourself on being meticulous with sun cream? But do you remember to protect your lips?
Lips are just as susceptible to burning as any other part of the body, but they rarely enjoy the same attention. It’s recommended to apply protection – ideally SPF of 15 or higher – throughout the day.
· Chewing ice
That satisfying crunch as you bite down on a piece of the ice from your drink. It might be refreshing but it’s terrible for your teeth.
Not only do you risk a cracked or chipped tooth, it’s also a sure-fire way to damage enamel. The end result? A higher risk of tooth decay and cavities. Simply not worth it for an ice cube.
· Ice cream overload
Sugary foods are notorious in summer. As the diet takes a holiday, ice creams, fizzy drinks, and snacks are always temptingly close and it’s easy to overindulge.
Try to remember everything in moderation. And if you do overdo it, make sure you brush your teeth as soon as possible.
Whilst we may be drawn to water on hot days, the temptation for chilled juices, refreshing g&ts, and sipping cocktails while the sun sets, also increases.
Just be conscious of how many you’re having and why not pop in a straw? This adds to the summer vibe and helps the nasties to bypass your teeth, reducing their negative impact.
Cricket, rounders, tennis, summer is jam-packed with sports. Unfortunately, many of them involve a ball – putting teeth in danger of being chipped or cracked.
No need to miss out on the action though, just be aware (work on your ball skills) and consider wearing a gum shield if you’re particularly nervous and would prefer protection.
Breaking from your normal routine is what holidays are all about, but don’t neglect your oral care! If you use an electric toothbrush, remember to pack a charger or have a manual brush on standby. And be sure to still brush at least twice a day…no matter what time you get out of bed.
Be photo ready
Want to look your best on all those summer snaps? Then why not treat yourself to a mini smile makeover with the Smile Clinic, so you can look and feel fabulous all summer long?
Perfect as pre-holiday smile prep, the mini makeover is our signature treatment involving stain removal and gently tooth shaping for a natural, radiant smile.