What these two campaigns mean for the health of your mouth.
If you even just flick through the news, whether in papers or on the internet, you can’t help but have noticed that January seems to be a popular month for campaigns that can be life changing.
Dry January, a campaign to encourage people to go a month without alcohol, has been going for a few years now, whilst the furore surrounding Piers Morgan and Gregg’s now infamous vegan ‘sausage’ roll means that the campaign to encourage people to go vegan for a month, Veganuary, has received a significant boost in publicity.
Both of these campaigns may offer benefits to our health as a whole. Alcohol is widely linked with a number of health problems, and even if you don’t wish to become entirely vegan, most experts agree that increasing our intake of non animal based foods is probably very beneficial for us.
Few articles on these current campaigns though, have focussed on the effect that these campaigns can have on our oral health. At the Confidental Clinic in Clapham, we thought that we would address just that.
Few would dispute that drinking to excess is bad for our health in many ways. In addition to the direct effect that it can have on organs such as the liver, alcohol is a prime cause of many accidents and assaults, as anyone who has visited an Accident and Emergency department on a Saturday night can probably attest.
Alcohol can also play a harmful role in our oral health in a number of other ways too.
Sugar content – Most alcoholic drinks contain sugar and some of the newer generation of drinks, often aimed at younger people, can contain very high quantities indeed. Even traditional beers such as a pint of bitter contain sugar though. Regular consumption means that we expose our teeth to more sugar than we would if we didn’t drink.
Dry mouth – Drinking alcohol often causes us to wake up with a dry mouth in the morning. This dehydration means that our mouths have provided an ideal place for bacteria to thrive in our mouth as we sleep. These bacteria are a significant contributor to both tooth decay and gum disease, both of which may lead to eventual tooth loss.
Accidents – as mentioned earlier, drinking too much alcohol may well lead to a stumble, fall or collision that damages our teeth. Whilst this can happen at any time, the effect of alcohol makes this more likely. In many cases, this will lead to the need to see an emergency dentist at our Clapham practice. Please call us as soon as you can and we will endeavour to see you the same day wherever possible.