WHAT HAPPENS TO YOUR TEETH WHILE YOU SLEEP?

WHAT HAPPENS TO YOUR TEETH WHILE YOU SLEEP?

Throughout the day, the foods and beverages you consume have a lot of impact on your oral health. It’s during these waking hours that you have all the control. You determine what you consume, when you brush, and how often you floss. However, when you turn the lights off and go to bed, much of that control goes out the window. Sleep is critical for your overall physical and mental health, but it can be damaging to your dental health. So, here is what happens to your teeth while you sleep and what Biltmore Commons Dental Care suggests you do about it.

What Happens to Your Teeth While You Sleep?

THE BACTERIA EAT AND EXCRETE WHILE YOU SLEEP

Depending on how often you brush and floss, a single tooth in your mouth can carry anywhere from 1,000 to 10,000 bacteria. So, while you get some shuteye, those microorganisms get busy consuming all the sources of nourishment they can find. They feast on all the food, sugar, and other particles stuck between your teeth and below the gumline.

Unfortunately, like all living organisms, what goes in, must come out. These bacteria then excrete themselves. Unfortunately, this excrement is highly acidic, and it ends up sitting on your teeth, damaging the enamel and contributing to tooth decay.

While you can’t eliminate the bacteria in your mouth, you can eliminate the damage they cause. Just remember, regular brushing and flossing is the way to go.

YOU PRODUCE LESS SALIVA THAN WHILE YOU’RE AWAKE

While you get some slumber, your mouth pulls back on saliva production. This is to prevent you from swallowing all night. However, this creates the perfect environment for all that bacteria to thrive. If you typically wake up with bad breath, then it’s likely all those germs and bacteria grew in numbers overnight. 

To help protect your teeth and your mouth from bacteria taking over, it’s always best to brush your teeth before bed and once you wake up. Otherwise, these microorganisms will continue to grow and multiple during the day. 

YOU MIGHT GRIND YOUR TEETH

Teeth grinding, or bruxism, affects nearly 40 million adults. What’s even more alarming is that many parents report that their kids also grind their teeth. If bruxism is left unchecked, it can disfigure teeth, wear down tooth enamel, cause cheek and tongue damage, and even gum decay. You might also notice an increased sensitivity to hot or cold temperatures.

Unfortunately, not many people realize they have bruxism, especially if they don’t visit their dentist regularly. But still, other health issues could be a key indication you’re grinding your teeth at night. These include the following:

  • Sleep disturbances
  • Dull headaches when you wake up
  • Sore muscles in your jaw, neck, or face

IS YOUR SLEEP AFFECTING YOUR ORAL HEALTH?

If you’re worried about your oral health and what’s happening to your teeth and gums while you sleep, then it’s time for a dental check-up. Biltmore Commons Dental Care proudly serves residents throughout Phoenix, AZ, and we are currently accepting new patients. We help individuals of all ages smile with confidence by offering regular cleanings and exams, professional teeth whitening, and restorative dentistry. So, request your appointment today by calling (602) 249-2227.