How Endurance Training Could Negatively Impact Your Oral Health
Posted on 5/24/2021 by Dr. Jae Seon Kim
When considering overall health, the mouth seems to be just a small part. It is sometimes forgotten how essential the mouth and teeth are in keeping the rest of our body healthy. The mouth is the gateway for breathing, eating, and drinking. The digestive process begins with the mouth, so it is important that it is not forgotten when it comes to healthcare. Endurance athletes are at a higher risk for dental erosion due to the consumption needed and what the body goes through.
Consumption During Endurance Training
It is no secret that endurance training is tough, but it can be great for the body and the individual. In order for the body to keep up with endurance training, athletes may put a lot in their body, and sometimes treat it roughly. Sports drinks helps spare muscle glycogen, and may help replenish electrolytes. However, sports drinks negatively affect the teeth by increasing acid producing bacteria. Sports drinks may also include phosphoric acid and citric acid, which is very tough on the enamel and can also increase risk for dental erosion.
Heavy mouth breathing creates a higher risk than the sports drinks that endurance athletes consume. Saliva is a crucial part of keeping a healthy mouth. Heavy breathing reduces saliva production and increases the potential for dry mouth. Dry mouth can lead to increased risk for dental erosion and other dental issues. Dry mouth combined with the sugary sports drinks can lead to advanced dental issues or more serious concerns if left untreated.
It is important to be aware of potential dental health concerns during endurance training. Regular oral hygiene and check-ups is recommended during this time. If you have questions about how to keep your teeth and mouth healthy during endurance training, please call our office and we will be happy to help.
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