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Is Exercise Bad for Your Teeth?

Jul 27th, 2016

You go for a run three times a week, make it to spin class twice a week, and even squeeze in a kickboxing class on the weekend; so, you think you’re doing pretty good when it comes to being healthy. Well, all that exercise might be doing the rest of your body good, but it could be harming your teeth.

A recent study linked vigorous activity and heavy training regimens to poor oral health. The study, which was published in 2013 in The British Journal of Sports Medicine examined athletes from the 2012 Summer Olympics. They found high levels of decay, gum disease, and enamel erosion. Researchers were unsure of the cause, some linked it to sugary sports drinks, but a study done in Germany aimed to prove what exactly was causing it.

The University Hospital Heidelberg in Germany ran a test using athletes and non-athletes of the same age and gender to determine the difference in oral health. The culprit–saliva production.

As the athletes worked out, the amount of saliva in their mouth’s lessened and their mouth’s got drier. The lack of saliva meant that bacteria in their mouths wouldn’t be washed away, and the bacteria could thrive, attacking teeth and causing decay.

But, before you give up your gym membership, know that the study found that this was usually only a likely possibility for hard-core athletes or those doing endurance training, such as marathons. The average person won’t put their oral health at risk when hitting the elliptical or going to spin class.

If you are an endurance runner or athlete, talk to your dentist about how you can keep your oral health in good shape while training.

Everyone tells you that hitting the gym is good for your health, but what about your oral health? Check out our blog post to learn more about how exercise could be harming your teeth.

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Here at Paul Mathew, D.D.S. we work diligently to protect our patients' privacy. Requesting an appointment via our Internet portal is considered part of what the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) has identified as electronically protected healthcare information or ePHI. Unfortunately, despite our best efforts, there are people or entities that may attempt to intercept the data you transmit to us. By checking the "I agree" box, and electronically making an appointment request, you acknowledge that you are making an appointment over the internet and that Paul Mathew, D.D.S. will keep this information confidential but cannot guarantee that others, outside of our practice, may illegally intercept this communication. By accepting these terms and conditions and sending this request via our Internet portal, you accept the inherent risk(s) associated with making this request for an appointment. If you do not accept the terms and conditions, you are always welcome to contact our office via telephone to schedule your appointment.