January 18, 2016

If you’re like many people I know, you love grabbing a popcorn and soda when you go to the movies. On National Popcorn Day, January 19, you don’t even need the excuse of a movie to eat popcorn. While I have absolutely no problem with anyone enjoying these fluffy treats, there are a few tips to follow as you eat. Take it from me as a periodontist in St. Augustine, FL. I’ve experienced the worst of what happens!

  1. Eat in small and careful portions. There’s no need to wolf down huge handfuls of popcorn. Also, the longer the popcorn is in your mouth, the more moist it becomes, and the more likely that you’ll swallow all parts of each piece.
  2. Keep the popcorn in the middle of your mouth to lessen the risk that you’ll chomp down on a kernel that ends up cracking your tooth or damaging an implant.
  3. Even the most cautious eaters run into problems such as kernels getting stuck. Often, flossing or brushing your teeth dislodges these stubborn creatures. When that doesn’t happen, though, give your dentist a call. If you leave the kernel as it is, and you risk an abscess or gum disease. Popcorn hulls are the number one culprit in abscess formation, so seriously, be careful.
  4. Drink water while you eat your popcorn. The liquid softens your food and helps wash away loose particles.

You shouldn’t feel like you need to bypass the popcorn. Simply being aware of the issue is a huge step; eating safely is most of the battle. Stay attuned to any pain in your gums, teeth or jaw that you can’t readily explain, and don’t be afraid to call a dentist. If you have a history of gum disease or periodontal disease, you may prefer to contact my office. I am Dr. Stephen Strout, a periodontist in St. Augustine, FL. I perform services such as bone grafting, gum grafting and wisdom teeth extraction. Reach out today by calling 904-687-2760, and ask about the other services I provide.




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