Sneezing, itchy eyes, and a runny nose are undoubtedly unpleasant experiences. If you’re unlucky enough to experience these allergy symptoms, you might be curious about how they could affect your dental health. In this blog, we’ll explore the potential connections and offer insights to help you manage your dental health while dealing with allergies.
What are Allergies?
Allergies are the body’s exaggerated response to substances it perceives as threats. There are many types of allergens. However, common allergens include pollen, dust, pet dander, perfumes, and chemicals. When exposed to allergens, your immune system can release histamines and other chemicals, leading to symptoms like sneezing and itching.
How Allergies Affect Dental Health
The largest sinus cavity, the nose, is connected and interdependent to the mouth. This one connection leaves allergies influencing dental health in several ways including:
- Dry Mouth: Allergic reactions often lead to mouth breathing, which can cause dry mouth. Saliva helps protect teeth by washing away food particles and bacteria. A dry mouth can increase the risk of cavities and gum disease.
- Sinus Issues: Allergies can cause sinus congestion and postnasal drip, leading to bad breath and a metallic taste in your mouth. These conditions can also exacerbate conditions like gingivitis. Sometimes, sinus problems can masquerade as tooth aches. If taking a decongestant makes your toothache go away, it may actually be your sinus.
- Oral Allergy Syndrome: Some individuals with food allergies may experience oral allergy syndrome, where certain fruits or vegetables trigger allergic reactions in the mouth, lips, or throat. These reactions can lead to discomfort, soreness, and inflammation.
How to Take Care of Your Dental Health when Living with Allergies
Even though allergies pose challenges to your dental health, there are ways to effectively manage the effects, like:
- Stay Hydrated: Combat dry mouth by drinking plenty of water. It helps maintain saliva flow and flushes away allergens.
- Oral Hygiene: Maintain a strict oral hygiene routine. Brush twice a day with fluoride toothpaste, floss daily, and use an alcohol-free mouthwash. Consider using a humidifier to alleviate dry mouth symptoms.
- Allergy Management: Consult an allergist or dentist to identify and manage your allergies effectively. Allergy treatments, like antihistamines, can alleviate symptoms that affect your oral health.
Let Us Know About Your Allergies
It may not be obvious at first, but allergies can impact dental health. Regular dental check-ups and maintaining open communication with our dentist in Westerville, OH, can help you address any allergy-related concerns. To get in touch with a professional about allergies and your dental health, give our office a call.Image by Drazen Zigic on Freepik