Are you wearing a mask or face covering longer than 15 minutes at a time? If you answered yes, please keep reading to learn about mouth problems that are associated with mask-wearing.
“Mask mouth” is a newly named condition that dentists are reporting throughout the United States. Even healthy patients with no history of oral health problems are showing up with nasty symptoms that are directly related to mask-wearing. Severe bad breath, tooth decay, inflammation of the gums, and receding gum lines are all being treated at an alarming rate. Wearing a mask or face covering for several hours a day is contributing to mouth problems, and Gwinnett Family Dental Care wants to make you aware of these problems so you can take measures to protect your oral health.
Dry Mouth – When the mouth is dry, it becomes a breeding ground for bacteria. Wearing a mask increases dryness in the mouth from the lack of saliva production. Try chewing sugar-free gum to keep your mouth moist throughout the day.
Mouth Breathing – After about three minutes of wearing a mask, most people begin breathing through their mouths. This occurs because a mask limits the air supply, so people start breathing through their mouths to take in more oxygen with each breath. Dry mouth can be directly linked to mouth breathing. 80% of your air intake should come from breathing through your nose. Your body was designed this way to prevent the mouth from drying out. However, mask-wearing dries out the mouth, decreasing saliva production. Saliva is necessary to fight oral bacteria and neutralize acids inside the mouth to prevent tooth decay and gum disease. Mouth breathing leaves the entire mouth vulnerable to oral health problems.
Dehydration – With the mouth being covered, people are much less likely to consume adequate amounts of water. Dehydration can cause serious health concerns and lead to related issues with oral health.
Whether you feel strongly in favor of mask-wearing or you are required to wear one throughout the day, it is essential that you take steps to avoid oral health issues that are directly linked to wearing a mask. At Gwinnett Family Dental Care, we are here for all of your oral health needs. Contact us today.
Posted on behalf of Gwinnett Family Dental Care