Ring a bell? This one comes in different forms. The best-known one is heartburn, but there are also acidic reflux disease and GERD. These afflictions come from indulging in too much red wine, chocolate, spicy foods and more. But also, eating disorders such as bulimia or alcoholism or certain over the counter drugs such as Aspirin or Vitamin C supplements can cause this problem.
What happens is that acid from the digestive process is regurgitated up the esophagus to the mouth. As the name suggests, it generally gives off a burning sensation in the chest. In the worst cases, vomiting comes into play and can cause havoc on the teeth and gums.
So, How Do You Protect Your Teeth?
First of all, it is important to say that if you suffer from the more serious ailments, it is imperative you seek out medical advice. Too much and regular alcohol consumption and eating conditions, for example, are dangerous. Other than that certain tips and tricks will help keep acidity levels down, and consequently protecting your teeth.
Let’s start with the basics. The ideal saliva pH level in the mouth is around 7.4 and some carbonated soft drinks have 3.4, making them highly corrosive. Acid goes straight for the enamel, gradually weakening and sensitizing your choppers.
- Keep soft drink, fruit juice, and wine consumption to a minimum. If you have imbibed in any one of them, do not brush immediately. Instead, wait for about forty minutes. And when you do brush, don’t be too harsh.
- While we are talking about drinking, make sure to stay hydrated with water to avoid a dry mouth. Saliva contains phosphate and calcium, which is good for the enamel. Another trick is to chew more when you eat – spit is generated by doing this.
- Rinse your mouth. This is particularly important after consuming alcohol, juice or soft drinks. It is also a good go-between before you brush your teeth.
- Brushing your teeth. It’s extremely important that you brush those teeth at least once a day. You can use manual or a dentist recommended electric brush to speed things up. Also, there are amazing WaterPik flossers that can help you with flossing as well.
Also, try oil pulling with coconut, olive or cod liver oil. After rinsing the mouth for five minutes spit out the contents into a bag or the bin. If you swallow, all of the bacteria in your mouth go to the stomach potentially aggravating any digestive ailments. Once you have done that, swallow a teaspoon of the oil to line the throat and digestive tract. Especially coconut oil reduces acid.
- Chew sugar-free gum after meals. As you already know, chewing increases the production of saliva in the mouth consequently increasing protective properties.
Learn more about: Sugar in your teeth.
- Practice balanced eating habits. That candy is bad for the teeth goes without saying, so try and keep it down to a minimum. Limit your intake of carbohydrates. The spit in your mouth breaks down carbs while you chew, converting them acid that causes damage to the enamel. Once transformed, carbs settle on the teeth developing bellicose bacterial sites.
- General oral hygiene through effective brushing with the right medium-strength toothbrush and rinsing are real lifesavers. Remember to floss at least once a day. Use toothpaste that contains fluoride – it’s one of the best cavity fighters with protective properties. Not only does this give you a nice smile but the chances of decay in the mouth are reduced.
- Keep going to the dentist. Regular check-ups are the best way to stay ahead of any things that might be wrong. If you know that you suffer from acidic reflux, tell your dentist. He or she might conduct a test to ascertain your acidic levels in the mouth. Prevention is better than aftercare.
- Do not grind. This damages the enamel. If it gets really bad, your dental practitioner might recommend a mouth guard.
Looking out for what happens in your mouth and acting in a timely manner is the best way to protect your teeth from acidic reflux and tooth decay. Stay ahead of the game with regular check-ups and a conscientious diet – it’s half the battle.