Exposure to high levels of chlorine can severely damage your teeth, causing enamel to erode away. Without your natural layer of enamel protecting them, your teeth can become highly sensitive and yes, even begin turning brown in color. Here’s what you need to know.
Your Teeth and Chlorine
Chlorine, while a useful and effective chemical to keep pools clean and bacteria free, can cause the pool water to become acidic if improperly monitored. As you swim, some of that chlorine can enter your mouth leading to some upsetting consequences, including the loss of your enamel.
As your enamel wears down, teeth may become discolored, edges may appear transparent, and you may feel extremely sensitive in later stages. Unfortunately, once this enamel is gone, the body can’t replace it.
A Life Jacket for Your Teeth
There are steps you can take to ensure your smile stays healthy while you swim.
While you can’t judge the pH of a pool by looking at it, you may be able to get a clue from looking around the pool. When at a public pool, be sure to notice linings, railings and ladders. Pool water that is too acidic can eat away at these surfaces. If you notice that these surfaces appear to be eroded away, know that the water may do the same thing to your teeth and consider skipping your swim.
If you’re lucky enough to have your own pool, you should check the pH balance at least once a week to make sure the levels are ideal.
Additionally, brushing with a toothpaste designed to keep your enamel healthy and having regular professional cleanings can go a long way in helping to reduce the effects of chlorine on your teeth. If you’re concerned about your tooth enamel, contact our office for an exam.