If you have been diagnosed with Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD), your oral health is at risk. The enamel of the teeth begins to erode at a pH level of 5.5. Keeping oral acidity neutral is therefore an important aspect of caring for teeth and gums. The alternative is exposing underlying tooth structure, which results in advanced decay, sensitivity, discoloration and other issues.
As with most threats to oral health, regular brushing and flossing is essential. A regimen that involves brushing twice a day for two minutes each time is recommended. You should also speak to your dentist about checkups to monitor any potential damage from GERD symptoms.
Desensitizing the Teeth
One of the actions you can take is switching to dentin-sensitive toothpaste. While this will not prevent GERD from damaging the teeth, you will gain protection against hot and cold sensitivities. This type of toothpaste is designed to block the tiny holes that react to painful or uncomfortable stimuli.
When you have an acid reflux episode, rinsing with water or a dilute containing baking soda can help prevent damage to the teeth. The purpose of this approach is to neutralize acid levels in the mouth, thus protecting the enamel from erosion. Ironically, brushing your teeth right after eating acidy foods is not a good idea. At Jefferson Dental Care in Georgia, we recommend waiting at least an hour.
You should consult with your primary care physician to create a plan aimed at identifying which foods or drinks trigger GERD reactions. By eliminating these foods, you can reduce the likelihood of suffering from acid reflux. There are also several effective medications that, if taken daily, can neutralize stomach acid.
Avoid relying on over-the-counter antacids. Every patient will present with symptoms of acid reflux in different ways, which means every treatment plan should be unique. The ultimate goal of preserving tooth enamel relies on individualized solutions. This cannot be achieved with a one-size-fits-all strategy.
To learn more about the impact that GERD can have on oral health, contact the offices of Jefferson Dental Care today to book a consultation.
Posted on behalf of Jefferson Dental Care