Don't Take a Holiday From Your Oral Health


The Ontario Dental Association urges you to keep up with good oral health habits during summer holidays

July 4, 2011

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Toronto, ON — For many people, summer means weekends by the lake, delicious barbeques and enjoying the warm sunshine. Whether you're preparing for a vacation at home or a getaway at the cottage, it's important to keep your oral health top of mind. Your mouth is the window to your body's overall health, so remember to maintain good oral health-care routines at all times, all year.

"Poor oral health not only affects your appearance but is associated with serious conditions, such as diabetes and respiratory diseases," says Dr. Harry Höediono, President of the Ontario Dental Association. "Getting your oral-health routine in order for summer is an important way to help ensure optimum overall health."

Here are some tips to help you enjoy the summer with a healthy smile.

Brush up! Stock up on toothbrushes and floss for the cottage. And if you're travelling, a collapsible toothbrush and a roll of floss fit nicely into your purse or carry-on luggage. Remember to replace your toothbrush every three to four months. Toothbrushes should also be discarded when the bristles look worn and bent, or after a cold or illness.

Book your dental exam today. Your dentist is trained to diagnose gum disease, tooth decay and oral cancer. Get an examination and cleaning in one sitting and you're good for the summer!

Watch your mouth. Moderate exposure to sunlight is the best natural source of vitamin D, used by the body to absorb calcium and phosphorous helping to keep teeth and bones strong. However, prolonged exposure to the sun can increase your risk of cancers, specifically to the lips and mouth. When applying sunscreen, don't forget your lips – use lip balm that contains protection again UVA/UVB rays.

Eat healthy. Fruits and vegetables contain the essential vitamins and minerals our teeth and gums need to stay strong and healthy. Enjoy the many fruits and vegetables that are in season between May and October and are readily available in your local farmers' markets.

Butt out. What better way to get a fresh start on summer than to quit smoking? All types of tobacco including cigarettes, cigars and chewing tobacco are harmful to your oral health. Smoking is a significant risk factor for oral cancers; additionally, over 75% of gum disease in adults is caused by smoking. Your dentist can help you establish a quit smoking plan.

"Get your dental exam done before the busy social season begins," says Dr. Höediono . "Nothing goes better with summer than a healthy mouth and a beautiful smile!"

More oral health-care tips can be found at


For more information, contact:

Brian Kellow
Public Affairs and Communications
T: 416-355-2265
E: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.