How Does the Summer Sun Help My Smile?

June 29, 2022

Filed under: Uncategorized — guthrieddsteam @ 3:34 pm
Beachside woman smiling under the summer sun

The dog days of summer look like they’ll be pretty hot this year. All over the world, a recent heatwave has forced people to head indoors and find ways of cooling themselves. The few who have been venturing out only seem to do so briefly. That’s a shame, as the summer sun has the power to strengthen smiles. To learn why that’s the case, here’s a summary of sunlight’s benefits for oral health and ways to stay safe in it this season.

The Summer Sun’s Benefits for Oral Health

Exposure to sunlight causes our bodies to produce a helpful nutrient called vitamin D. It boosts oral health in various ways, such as:

Immune System Support

Vitamin D can support the immune system and help it function properly. In particular, it regulates the activity of immune cells that have antiviral responses. As a result, it protects us from germs, viruses, and infections.

Protection Against Tooth Decay

Based on current research, several studies claim a positive connection between vitamin D and the prevention of tooth decay. More specifically, researchers have shown said vitamin can lower the risk of enamel loss by 50%!

Calcium Absorption

Most people know calcium as a mineral associated with healthy bones and teeth. But it’s also true that, without vitamin D, its benefits don’t go far. In other words, calcium needs vitamin D to absorb properly and completely, causing your body to receive its effects.

How to Stay Safe in the Summer Sun

Of course, the summer sun has risks as well as rewards. You could get sunburned, dehydrated, or (given recent temperatures) suffer a heat stroke.

Fortunately, there are simple ways to reduce these risks. You can protect yourself from sunburn by applying SPF sunscreen when you go outside. To avoid dehydration, drink plenty of water to compensate for sweating. Lastly, you can prevent heat stroke by taking it easy amid the summer highs instead of overexerting yourself. These and similar tips should help you get the most out of sunshine without harsh downsides.

While staying cool amidst the heat is great, try and get some sun if and when you can. Not only could your skin turn bronze, but your teeth could also become stronger and healthier than ever!

About the Author

Dr. Jamie Guthrie is a dentist in Ardmore, OK, having earned her DDS at the University of Oklahoma’s School of Dentistry. She worked as the chief dental officer of Kickapoo Tribal Health Center before moving into private practice over ten years ago. Today, she offers patients preventive, cosmetic, and restorative dentistry, including emergency smile treatments. Dr. Guthrie currently practices at her self-titled clinic and can be reached at her website or by phone at (580)-224-9600.

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