Written By Kassandra Foreman / Reviewed By Ray Spotts
Chlorine and chemicals used to keep pool water clean and healthy can put your teeth at risk. They can create deposits on your teeth and weaken the enamel, however, there are things that can be done to reduce the effect of swimming on the teeth.
When swimming recreationally there is often little to no risk of the heath of your teeth, but swimming over six hours in a week can begin to create dental concerns. At this increased level of exposure the teeth can develop what is called “swimmers calculus.” This occurs when the chlorine in the water leaves residue on the teeth which makes the teeth appear yellow or brown.
Enamel weakened with chlorine
Exposing the teeth to chlorine also weakens the enamel. Teeth should not be brushed directly after swimming as the weakened enamel will be brushed away. Teeth can be rinsed with clean water to remove residue but not brushed for a while after leaving the swimming pool.
If chlorine is concentrated too highly in the water it can eat away at the enamel leaving it thin. The teeth can become sensitive and prone to cavities and breakage. Having a professional balance the chlorine in the pool is the best way to ensure a backyard or community pool stays healthy and is least likely to affect teeth.
When snorkeling or deep diving there is an additional concern for the teeth exposed to the pressure changes. The deeper depths have increased pressure that can affect the teeth by squeezing the air within a tooth. As the air contracts the fillings, crowns and other dental repairs may be damaged or loosened.
This also causes pain in the teeth and gums and can increase pain in any areas that have existing decay or damage. To avoid this, have a dental exam to ensure there are no loose fillings or decay that needs treatment first.
Dental appliances and swimming
It is not recommended to swim with removable dental appliances in place. These can be damaged, lost or obtain damage from the chlorine. Dentures may remain in place while swimming but it is suggested that a dental adhesive be used first to keep them from shifting or becoming loose.
To combat the effects of chlorine and swimming on the teeth there are a few steps to follow. Always rinse the mouth after swimming with clean water, remove all retainers before swimming, do not brush teeth after swimming, ensure chlorine treatments in swimming pools are administered by a professional, and visit your dentist if any signs of discoloration are found on the teeth.
In most cases there is little concern of damage to the teeth unless swimming is occurring for multiple hours each week.
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Kassandra Foreman has been writing freelance for five years now and enjoys learning about new things to write about. When not writing she teaches yoga and meditation with a focus on health and fitness.
Founder Ray Spotts has a passion for all things natural and has made a life study of nature as it relates to health and well-being. Ray became a forerunner bringing products to market that are extraordinarily effective and free from potentially harmful chemicals and additives. For this reason Ray formed Trusted Health Products, a company you can trust for clean, effective, and healthy products. Ray is an organic gardener, likes fishing, hiking, and teaching and mentoring people to start new businesses. You can get his book for free, “How To Succeed In Business Based On God’s Word,” at www.rayspotts.com.