Consider the drinking straw. It’s a simple apparatus, with many good uses. Straws come in all sorts of bright colors, and can add convenience and decorative flair to the simplest drinks. For all the positive things about straws, they can sometimes be used to avoid facing dental issues. Yet trying to hide from problems will rarely make things better. There is usually a more satisfying result when there is honest conversation at exams and screenings, especially if you have noticed a change in tooth comfort.
You Rarely Drink Water or Milk
When you sip through a straw, you could be drinking just about anything. Sodas with sugar, fruit juices and highly colored drinks can have adverse affects on your teeth. Whether it is a cosmetic change (such as discoloration from dark foods) or a weakening of the tooth structure (such as the formation of a cavity) don’t use a straw to skirt the issue. Along with occasional sweet and dark treats, use your straw to get plenty of water and milk, for the sake of your smile.
You’ve Developed a Sensitive Tooth
Straws help keep cold liquid from coming in direct contact with tooth surfaces. This can be a good thing if your tooth enamel has thinned, causing sensitivity to heat and cold. However, if the sensitivity arises suddenly, or seems concentrated in a single tooth, don’t use a straw to mask the symptoms. A developing cavity, or gum irritation, can also cause a tooth or several teeth to become more sensitive to temperature changes. The fix may be relatively simple, such as using a toothpaste for sensitive teeth, or it may need more intense attention. Your dentist will know for sure.
Chewing is Uncomfortable
If you are drinking more meals because chewing is uncomfortable, it’s time put aside the straw and talk to your dentist. Habits such as teeth grinding (bruxism) can cause tooth sensitivity, and jaw discomfort when chewing. There are dental appliances that can treat bruxism and restore comfort to eating meals and sleeping at night.
Don’t Let A Drinking Straw Impair Your Oral Health
There are lots of good reasons to drink through a straw, and a few not-so-good reasons. Don’t be afraid to discuss the pros and cons of drinking straws at your next office visit. Get the information and treatment you need in Celina, TX by contacting Celina Family Dentistry to schedule a visit today at (214) 851-0130.