Dental health: sleeping with your mouth open is as harmful as a soft drink
In addition to regular tooth brushing, nutrition is also important for dental health. Most people are well aware that you shouldn't have a sugar-soft drink before going to bed. Sleeping with your mouth open has just as bad an effect on your teeth as researchers have now found.
As problematic as a soft drink before bed
If you want to avoid tooth decay and toothache, you should stop drinking sweet drinks, such as soft drinks or fruit juices, especially before going to bed. The acid in the fruit attacks the enamel, warn doctors. New Zealand researchers have now made an interesting discovery. According to this, people who sleep with their mouths open damage their teeth as badly as if they drank a Coke or an orange juice before going to bed.
An open mouth dries up
People who sleep with their mouths open are not doing their teeth any good. If it stays open for a long time, the result is a dry mouth that lacks the saliva that kills acid-producing bacteria. This makes erosion and caries easy. This emerges from a study published in the journal "Journal of Oral Rehabilitation". As the Swiss internet portal "20min.ch" reports, the pH value drops from a neutral 7.7 to a slightly acidic 6.6 when the sleeper breathes through the mouth.
Partly very acidic pH value
The researchers led by Joanne Choi from the Sir John Walsh Research Institute, University of Otago in New Zealand, equipped ten healthy patients with custom-made tooth sensors and nasal clips for the study. In one case, the pH is said to have dropped to 3.6, which is very acidic and leads to erosion of the tooth enamel. According to the scientists, the value is comparable to that after enjoying a soft drink or a fruit juice. Choi said: "Our results support the assumption that mouth breathing is indeed a cause of dental diseases such as tooth enamel erosion and tooth decay."
More tooth decay due to sleep and breathing problems
According to the internet portal, the New Zealand study confirms observations by dentists that patients with sleep or breathing problems have more caries. According to this, the dental problems increase from front to back, because the oral cavity first dries out at the back. Men are generally more affected, as a third of them breathe through the mouth at night, compared to only five percent of women, according to the portal. (ad)