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04Nov2015

Proper Oral Care For Young Musicians

IS YOUR CHILD A MUSICIAN? When the stage lights are on and the curtain goes up, teeth are probably the last thing on both of your minds. However, there are some dental concerns particular to instrumentalists that we feel it’s important for you both to be aware of:

Make Sure That Instruments Are Properly Sanitized

Bacterial infection can result from improperly cleaned instruments. When musical instruments (especially brass and woodwinds) are shared across the school, there’s concern for cross-infection. Microbes can make kids sick, causing anything from rashes, to allergies, to increased risk of tooth decay. Microbes can live in instruments for weeks or even months after the last use. Always take instruments apart and clean them properly, and brush your teeth twice a day to interrupt the development of harmful oral bacteria.

Dry Mouth And Nervous Performers

Ever felt your mouth go dry as a desert right before a performance? You’re not alone. It’s a common reaction when we’re nervous. It can get especially annoying for musicians who need saliva in order to play instruments properly.

Saliva is also important to your dental health. It acts as a cleanser and shield against bacteria and harmful elements.

Some musicians keep a stash of candy, tic tacs, or gum nearby to handle dry mouth. However, this could harm dental health. Without protective saliva, teeth are especially vulnerable to decay-causing bacteria that thrive when we feed them sugar. Chewing or sucking on something to encourage saliva flow is a great idea, but make sure you provide your child with sugar-free candies and gums. Encourage them to keep a bottle of water nearby to refresh the mouth and rinse away sugar and acids.

A Few Things That Look Familiar When You’re In Band:

Preserve Dental Health To Protect The Music

A musician’s embouchure is an essential element for a beautiful performance. This refers to the shape of the mouth against the instrument, and it’s affected by anything from the muscles in the mouth, to the fit of the teeth, and overall dental comfort.

We care about each of our patients and we want to make sure that we’re giving your child the best care, catered to their situation and habits. When we know about your child’s passions, habits, and extracurricular activities, we’re more able to provide personalized, effective care.

Thanks for your trust in our practice. We love serving your family!

Top image by Flickr user H. Michael Miley used under Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 4.0 license. Image cropped and modified from original.
The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.

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