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How to Deal with 4 Common Winter Mouth Issues

December 24, 2021

Filed under: Uncategorized — bsutterteam @ 10:28 pm
Couple playing in snow, successfully dealing with winter mouth issues

There are plenty of things to love about winter, whether you enjoy seasonal sports like skiing or you are more the type to curl up by the fire with a good book. As wonderful as winter can be, however, it can also cause some uncomfortable symptoms for your smile. Let’s talk about four common winter mouth issues and how you can combat them.

Sensitive Teeth

If you have thin tooth enamel, the tubules in your teeth are more likely to carry sensations to the tooth’s nerve, which in turn can cause sensitivity and pain. You might even experience discomfort when you do something as simple as breathe in cold air. Sensitivity is also common as the teeth contract and expand in response to temperature changes (such as when you are transitioning from outdoors to indoors).

To deal with winter tooth sensitivity:

  • Talk to your dentist about any new or worsening oral symptoms. In many cases, sensitivity is not a big deal, but it may also point to a serious problem that requires emergency care.
  • Always breathe through your nose when you are outside.
  • Consume hot beverages through a straw.
  • Consider switching to a desensitizing toothpaste.
  • During outdoor activities, think about wearing a balaclava that covers your mouth.

Dry Mouth

Humidity tends to be lower in the winter, which can make your mouth feel dry. Things like indoor heating (especially wood heat) and viral cold and flu infections can further contribute to dry mouth. To minimize this problem, you can:

  • Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water.
  • Stimulate saliva production by chewing on sugar-free gum.
  • Cut back on your caffeine intake.
  • Use a humidifier in your home.

Chapped Lips

In addition to making your mouth feel dry, low humidity can also suck the moisture out of your lips, causing them to become chapped. In severe cases, they might even crack. To deal with these issues, you can:

  • Use a humidifier in your home.
  • Drink plenty of fluids.
  • Keep your lips moisturized. There are lots of high-quality lip balms on the market. Petroleum jelly also works well. You might find that such products perform their best if you gently exfoliate your lips before applying them.

Canker Sores

Dry mouth, as well as reduced immunity due to cold and flu infections, can contribute to an increased likelihood of developing a canker sore. If you find yourself dealing with this problem, sucking on ice and using oral anesthetics may help to relieve your pain. If you are struggling with a severe or persistent canker sore, talk to your dentist.

Winter isn’t always easy on your smile. Use the above tips to cope with common seasonal mouth issues so you can stay comfortable until the weather warms up.

Meet the Dentist

Dr. Ben Sutter has been serving patients for more than 15 years. He provides a range of general dentistry services, including preventive care, emergency care, and more. To learn more about him and how our team may be able to help you maintain a healthy smile this winter, contact us at 541-683-7500.

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