It’s time to bring out the shorts, sunscreen, and beach towels. As you prepare for summer, Waco dentist Dr. Corbet Locke wants to make sure your smile is ready for the fun. Be aware of the popular summer activities that may damage your dental health.

Refreshing Swim

Swimming pools contain chlorine and antimicrobial chemicals that kill bacteria in the water, but these additives increase the water’s pH level and destroy your smile. According to The Academy of General Dentistry, the elevated pH level may form a hard, brown tartar deposit on your front teeth. Some studies also show that pool chemicals can weaken and erode your teeth. Additionally, slipping on wet surfaces or diving into shallow water can cause facial injuries, including broken teeth, knocked out teeth, and fractured jaws. Fortunately, Dr. Locke can restore your smile with dental crowns or implants.

If you need to cool off, Dr. Locke recommends heading to the beach instead. Ocean water contains salt that is useful for killing oral bacteria and reducing inflammation. Additionally, beach sand is dry and soft—and therefore less dangerous if you trip.

Suntanned Skin

The sun’s ultraviolet rays can burn and damage your skin—including your lips. The American Cancer Society reports that frequent sun exposure increases your risk of oral cancer. However, the sun’s UV rays provide your body with vitamin D—which is necessary for keeping your body strong.

If you spend time outside enjoying the sunshine, make sure you wear a protective lip balm with an SPF of 30 or higher to protect your lips from burning and drying. You should also wear a hat to hide your face from the sun.

Cool Snacks

The heat naturally makes your body lose water through sweating, and it’s important to keep your body hydrated to rebuild your strength. Children may crave a refreshing soda or ice cream cone, but soft drinks and sweet treats often contain sugars or acids that decay and erode teeth.

It’s best to drink a cold glass of tap water when you’re feeling hot or thirsty. Water helps regulate your body temperature, soothe your skin, and keep your mouth moist and healthy. Dr. Locke also suggests satisfying your appetite with fresh fruit. Many fruits have high water content that help hydrate your mouth, as well as provide healthy nutrients. Fruit can also be transformed into your favorite cool summer snacks—like natural fruit smoothies or frozen fruit popsicles. Be careful, though, because citrus fruits are very acidic and may erode your teeth. Ask Dr. Locke which snacks will keep your smile healthy.

Contact Dr. Locke to keep your smile bright this summer. Call our dentist office in Waco at (254) 776-4888 to request an appointment. We welcome families from Waco, Woodway, McGregor, Hewitt, and the surrounding Central Texas area.