When Game Time Stops Being Fun
Are you ready for some football? It’s game time, sports fans, and whether you are heading out to M&T Bank Stadium for a tailgating session before a Ravens game or just hanging out at your local sports bar to watch the game with friends, you know that the next few hours will be filled with delicious food and drinks. While we certainly want you to enjoy yourself at your favorite sporting events, we also want you to be informed about how tailgating, sports bar, and party foods can affect your teeth. Is it too late for you? Is the damage done?
- In the absence of your kitchen tools, it may be tempting to tear into a bag of chips with your teeth or open a bottle of your favorite beverage with (*gulp*) your teeth, but DON’T! When you use your teeth as tools, you run the risk of cracking or chipping them. To prevent this, keep a Swiss Army knife or other multi-tool with your tailgating supplies so the most important tools are always within reach during football season.
- Don’t make chips the main event. While they’re not sweet, they act just like sugar when they get stuck between your teeth or the crevices of your molars. In fact, you might as well be munching on candy, because the carbohydrates in chips feed plaque bacteria and increase your chances of tooth decay.
- Make sure healthy options are readily available. A meat, cheese, and charcuterie tray will be a favorite for those who follow the keto diet. A yogurt-based veggie dip will increase your calcium and probiotic intake — both of which are beneficial for your teeth. Throw in some raw vegetables — which help naturally clean your teeth — and you’ve got healthy options to keep even the biggest snack lovers happy.
- Your favorite beers and salty foods can lead to dehydration, which causes your mouth to produce less saliva. As your body’s natural defense against decay, saliva is necessary to keep your teeth clean. To avoid dehydration, drink plenty of water during your tailgate and during the game; not only will this help keep your mouth clean and keep your body hydrated, it will also help to rinse away the acidity left on your teeth after a soda or beer.
Whether you’re rooting for the Ravens or Redskins, we hope you enjoy every second of this football season. Should you have a tailgating-related tooth emergency, we will be here for you without judgment. We look forward to seeing you at your next appointment.
Dr. Holsinger & Dr. Higgins