By Kelsi Matylewicz/ Benco Dental Social Media Intern

With summer soon approaching (finally), a lot of people will spend their time basking in the sun, swimming, and snacking. Not only do you need to protect your body during the sunny season, you also need to protect your teeth.

Dr. Marielaina Perrone of Henderson, Nevada, recently offered helpful advice on how to keep your smile safe this summer.

* Always stay hydrated. Not only is this is good for your entire body, but it also keeps your mouth hydrated. This will help protect against tooth decay and keep oral tissues moist to prevent them from drying out.

* Choose wise snacks that can keep you and your teeth healthy. Poor snacking can damage your teeth and health. Good summer choices include fresh fruits like watermelon and bananas.

*  Protected your lips with a lip balm or lip gloss with moisture and SPF protection is important, try to use at least SPF 15.

* Protect those smiles when playing sports. Don’t forget to wear a mouth guard.

* Be aware of the damage swimming in a pool can cause on our dental health. Swimming in pools with high chlorine content can cause tooth enamel erosion. Swimming in the ocean is actually a better option. The high salt water content can reduce oral bacteria.

* Try to avoid drinking a lot of sports drinks. Most sports drinks are highly acidic with a high content of sugar. These drinks can lead to tooth enamel erosion as well as tooth decay.

* Don’t forget the most important meal of the day: breakfast. Skipping breakfast can lead to increased snacking on unhealthy items.