It’s hard to believe July is almost here. College students are starting to plan for heading off to school. For most college students, it’s hard to keep up on personal health and wellness while trying to balance papers, exams, laundry, and social activities. As our patients that are attending college get ready to leave, we wanted to share some dental health and wellness tips to help make the transition easier.
The oral health risk factor most commonly associated with college students is excessive caffeine and alcohol consumption. Like all things, these should be consumed in moderation. Remember that coffee, soda, beer, and wine can stain teeth and cause dry mouth. These all lead to a higher risk of tooth decay. We have some suggestions on safer ways to enjoy eating drinking that cause less damage to your teeth.
Limit your sugar intake. Sugar is one of the biggest factors contributing to tooth decay. While having some sugar in your diet is essential, most people tend of overdo it. Limit the amount of sugar you add to coffee and minimize drinking soda or snacking on candy.
Drink from a straw. Sounds silly right? Drinking from a straw actually helps prevent stains because you avoid direct contact with the front of your teeth. This also means reduces exposure to harmful bacteria.
Make smart breakfast choices. Don’t skip breakfast; it’s crucial to your scholastic performance. If you don’t have time for breakfast, grab an apple or a bagel with peanut butter. Limiting carbs and adding protein is a smarter breakfast choice than cereals high in sugar.
Stay hydrated, drink lots of water. The average person should drink around 100 ounces of water per day. Dry mouth increases the risk of tooth decay. Keeping hydrated is not only good for your overall health, but great for your oral health as well. And remember…plain water is best.
Designate a cheat day and consume things in moderation. Having a cheat day gives you something to look forward to and also helps you stay on track for healthy eating. Eating and drinking in moderation is what’s going to make the biggest difference in overall health and wellness.
Remember, regular checkups and cleanings are still a must. Just because you’re in college and away from home doesn’t mean you should stop seeing the dentist. During the school year, your schedule is anything but normal (especially if you’re attending school out-of-state). We suggest our college bound students schedule cleanings in January and July so they stay on track. We are always here not matter when you need us!