The rules about wearing a mask vary throughout different establishments. In all health related facilities it is mandatory. All our children now have to wear masks in school. That’s a total of 6 hours of mask wear!
We are seeing more of our patients with periodontal disease (bone loss around the teeth) and cavities. This is due to the effects of continual mask-wearing which is keeping germs and bacteria in the mouth.
What Are The Symptoms Of Mask Mouth?
Mask mouth is a general expression that covers a selection of symptoms. These include:
- Sour breath
- Receding gums
- A dry mouth
- Tooth decay
Mask wearers might experience one or more of these symptoms, especially if they spend a lot of time wearing their masks.
What Causes Mask Mouth?
Mask mouth is caused by wearing a mask for a lot of time, keeping your mouth closed behind a cloth mask, and breathing through your mouth more than your nose, can dry out your mouth. As your mouth becomes dry, your breath starts to smell, and your teeth suffer.
Saliva is vital to maintaining fantastic oral health, so if you get a dry mouth, you might find that your teeth get damaged. The symptoms of mask mouth aren’t dangerous on their own, but they can cause lasting damage when taken together.
How Can You Prevent Mask Mouth?
1. If possible reduce the amount of time you spend wearing a mask. That means going out less, avoiding contact with other people who aren’t members of your household, and working from home if possible. If you’re not wearing your mask, then you’ll dramatically reduce your chances of getting mask mouth, although you still need to take care of your teeth.
2. Take regular breaks and get some fresh air during the day. When you don’t have to wear your mask, take it off and breathe in the fresh air to refresh your mouth. Wearing a mask isn’t necessary if you’re outside and far away from other people, so you should take your mask off on your journey to and from your destination.
3. It would be best if you also tried to drink water throughout the day so that your mouth produces more saliva. Avoid drinking lots of sugary drinks, such as juice or soda, as they can cause even more tooth decay.
4. Try to brush your teeth more often, and floss your teeth after every meal.
5. Don’t skip your 6 month cleaning and exam with our office.
It is important to know that with increase mask wear, bacteria and decay can spread quickly. Some of our patients who have been cavity free have been getting cavities. No one is immune to the consequences of wearing masks and not maintaining proper oral hygiene.
Avoid Short-Term Fixes
Bad breath is one of the most noticeable symptoms of mask mouth, and so it’s easy to think that merely making your breath smell better will fix the problem. However, short-term solutions, such as breath mints and mouthwash, can do more harm than good.
Instead of using these solutions, try to use the above techniques to keep your mouth clean and reduce your mask’s impact on your oral health.
If In Doubt, Give us a call
If you get significant problems with your teeth or mouth, give us a call and schedule an appointment. Delaying treatment could cause the problem to worsen, so reach out to your dentist if you find that the problem isn’t going away or is getting worse. Give us a call or schedule on line here.