Can Wearing A Face Mask Affect Dental Health?

Posted by Pi Dental Center on Aug 15, 2020 12:00:00 PM

Face Mask image for blog called "Can wearing a face mask affect dental health?"Complaints about wearing a face mask are common and frequent.

Now many dentists believe that a new issue related to dental health has surfaced. It has been aptly named “Mask Mouth.”

Wearing a mask for several hours each day may cause dry mouth, which in turn can lead to bad breath, and possibly cavities and gum disease. Mouth breathing dries the tissue of the mouth, decreases saliva and increases the build-up of bacteria. Many people breathe through their mouths instead of their noses when they wear face masks.

Saliva helps to protect the teeth and prevents cavities. Less saliva means more risk for cavities.

Left untreated, gum disease (periodontal disease) can eventually result in cardiovascular problems such as stroke and heart attack.

An impromptu poll of friends and colleagues found that some actually did breathe through their mouths while wearing face masks. They mentioned that both their mouth and throat often felt dry.

The doctors at Pi Dental Center recommend that patients continue to wear masks but take the following measures:

  • Brush regularly with fluoride toothpaste and floss daily.
  • Drink water frequently. Use a straw so that you don’t have to remove your mask to do so. Set a goal to drink at least 8 cups of water each day.
  • Avoid beverages that can dehydrate, such as coffee and alcohol. Use only alcohol-free dental mouth rinses.
  • To help ensure that your teeth remain healthy, limit sugary foods.
  • Schedule your regular dental hygiene and check-up visit.
  • Awareness is important. Be aware of how you are breathing. If you find that you breathe through your mouth while wearing a mask, remind yourself to breathe through your nose.

In addition to dental health problems caused from wearing a face mask, there has been an increase in dental problems due to the shutdown of dental offices.

Dr. Wolfinger states, “I have seen an increase in problems related to poor oral hygiene recently, which I attribute mainly to the fact that many patients have missed their normally scheduled oral hygiene and exam visits as a result of the government shutdown.”

Dolly Kituskie, a dental hygienist at Pi Dental Center has heard many of her patients complain about wearing masks, saying they are itchy and uncomfortable. She has also noticed that some of her patients’ home care has been poor during quarantine. She contributes this lax home care to “increased stress about the whole situation. They are not doing their home care as often or as well.”

Dr. Slauch said, “Wearing a face mask is essential as our society navigates the COVID-19 pandemic. Although our lives are upside down at the moment, keep in mind that routine dental hygiene and maintenance should never be ignored.”

While there is no scientific research that correlates mask wearing to dental decay/gum disease, dentists have identified the phenomenon. What is important is to continue to practice good oral hygiene.

Pi Dental Center advocates wearing a face mask in public. Continue to practice rigorous oral hygiene, drink plenty of fluids and see your dentist regularly. We have implemented a wide array of protocols to provide a safe environment for our patients and staff. If you are due for routine dental care or are in need of a dental visit, please call our office at 215-646-6334.

Schedule an Appointment

Further reading: The Truth Behind the Mask

Tags: dental health, healthy teeth, oral health

Healthy Teeth Like Diamonds

Posted by Chris Raines on Feb 3, 2017 6:12:58 PM

Strong healthy teeth are like diamonds“A tooth is much more to be prized than a diamond.” States Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra in Don Quixote

Diamonds are greatly valued and the most cherished of all gemstones. Strong healthy teeth have often been compared to diamonds. The word, diamond, is derived from the ancient Greek term adámas meaning indestructible and unbreakable. Both diamonds and teeth are described as sparkling, shiny, bright and gleaming.

Strong healthy teeth help to ensure good overall health. Problems in the mouth can affect the rest of the body. Studies suggest that oral bacteria and inflammation associated with gum disease play a role in certain diseases. Diseases like diabetes and HIV/AIDS can lower the body's resistance to infection, making oral health problems more severe. Read Mayo Clinic Oral Health Page.

An attractive smile is both socially and professionally significant. Your smile is the first thing people see when they meet you. A sparkling smile can improve self-confidence and help you to radiate charm and assurance.


In her book, Smile Your Heart Out, Joanne Balshi says, “We all tend to live up, or down, to the vision we see in the mirror.” Dental restoration often leads to widespread improvements in life. Many of our patients who’ve had complete dental makeover’s find that they look years younger with their gorgeous new smiles. And, in some cases, this dental rejuvenation has prompted them to make needed life changes or take on challenges that had previously seemed impossible. Some have improved their overall health regimens; others have completed higher level education. Some have simply begun to smile widely when photographed.

Many people wonder if they are candidates for dental implants. Today, anyone who is missing one or more of their teeth due to injury, disease, or decay may be a candidate for dental implants. Drs. Thomas Balshi and Glenn Wolfinger are board certified prosthodontists, experts in the restoration of teeth. They have successfully treated patients for over 30 years at Pi Dental Center in Fort Washington with everything from crowns, fillings, dental extractions, removable dentures, to digital dentistry, advanced dental implant treatment with bone grafting and computer guided surgery.

Like a diamond, a beautiful smile lights up a whole room. Call to learn how to have strong healthy teeth like diamonds!

Ask A Dental Question Or Schedule An Appointment

Tags: dental makeover, dental health, dental health and quality of life, healthy teeth