Summer is finally here, which means plenty of time spent outdoors soaking up the sun and warm weather. The last thing you’d expect to interrupt your plans is a dental emergency. Although you might believe it will never happen to you, 1 in 6 Americans has one annually. While there’s never a good time for an oral health issue to occur, having a toothache or another emergency can damper your summer festivities. Whether you’re cooling off in the pool at home or taking your dream vacation, here are 4 tips to prevent dental emergencies from ruining your summer.
1. Schedule a cleaning and checkup.
If it has been longer than 6 months since your last cleaning and checkup, it’s time to see your dentist. Many dental emergencies result from an untreated oral health problem that has been lingering in the mouth, like a cavity. A quick trip to your dentist allows them to check your teeth and gums to ensure they are healthy, so you don’t unexpectedly spend a day in the dental chair.
2. Wear an athletic mouthguard.
You wouldn’t play football without a helmet, so don’t leave your teeth vulnerable to injuries when playing contact sports. Dentists across the country see an increase in sports-related dental injuries during summer, like knocked out and broken teeth. You can safeguard your smile using a simple piece of protection. An athletic mouthguard will lessen the likeliness of an oral health emergency, as well as jaw injuries and concussions. No matter if you’re playing beach volleyball or riding your bike, don’t forget to wear your mouthguard.
3. Follow pool safety rules.
Sports aren’t the only cause of dental emergencies. Swimming pools send many people to an emergency dentist every summer. Bumping your mouth on the wall of the pool or slipping on a wet deck can result in chipped, broken, and dislodged teeth. You don’t need to stay out of the pool to protect your smile. Instead, follow pool safety rules, like walking on wet surfaces and not diving in shallow water.
4. Don’t use your teeth as tools.
If you’ll be hitting the road this summer, you’ll probably snack along the way. It’s convenient to use your teeth as tools to open a bag of chips or loosen the lid on a water bottle, especially when you’re driving. Although your teeth are handy, they’re not meant to be used for more than biting and chewing. It’s best to always use the right tool for the job, so you can get to your destination without any unnecessary delays.
Don’t let anything keep you from taking a dip in the pool or luxurious summer vacation. Commit to your smile to prevent a dental emergency.