Dental Hygiene and Trumpet

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by Mark_Kindy, Feb 17, 2012.

  1. Mark_Kindy

    Mark_Kindy Mezzo Forte User

    Jul 11, 2010
    Gainesville, FL
    Heard from a director a while back that if you don't maintain dental hygiene, then the plaque builds up on your teeth and can wear away at the inside of your lips. How much truth is there to this?
    Obviously we should brush for multiple other reasons (girls, work, sanitation, girls, appearance, girls...[or guys for the female players!]) but I was curious as to the relationship between the two. Thanks in advance!
  2. forrest

    forrest Piano User

    Aug 14, 2007
    St Louis MO
    A dentist could give you a more accurate answer than a director or us, but on a related point, dental hygiene is important to keep all the crud out of your horn.

    Brush every time before you play.
  3. Phil986

    Phil986 Forte User

    Nov 16, 2009
    Near Portland, OR.
    For that to really happen you'd have to build up enough plaque that nobody will want to thave a conversation with you standing less than 5 ft away. People will start nicknaming you Austin Powers before your lips start eroding from it...
  4. oldlou

    oldlou Forte User

    Aug 28, 2005
    Grand Rapids, Mi.
    In addition to all of the above; I have had to replace or patch many leadpipes that were rotted through with red rot caused by food particles spewed through them by players that didn't have any concept of what a toothbrush was. My students are all admonished to use my home bathroom and their toothbrush prior to EVERY lesson. If they forget to bring their toothbrush, I have a supply of new ones in my bathroom cabinet that they have to pay $5.00 each for. They soon learn to bring their own brush for each lesson.

  5. Mark_Kindy

    Mark_Kindy Mezzo Forte User

    Jul 11, 2010
    Gainesville, FL
    Alright, so right now it's really relating to trumpet cleanliness (which makes sense) more so than the playing.
    Agreed, Old Lou... brushing is a necessity.
  6. codyb226

    codyb226 Banned

    Mar 9, 2011
    Florida, US
    You did post on a trumpet forum site......
  7. EricMGB1974

    EricMGB1974 Pianissimo User

    Nov 12, 2009
    Elmira, NY
    From my point of view as a dentist, the short answer is little to none. Plaque is a soft biofilm composed of bacteria and various organic substances that builds up on your teeth. It will not wear away the mucosa of your inner lips no matter how much pressure you're applying while playing. Not brushing and flossing daily to remove that plaque can have any number of bad results that can affect your trumpet playing but the plaque itself wearing away your lips will not be one of them.
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2012
    kingtrumpet likes this.
  8. Mark_Kindy

    Mark_Kindy Mezzo Forte User

    Jul 11, 2010
    Gainesville, FL
    Many thanks, Eric, for clearing this up!
    kingtrumpet likes this.
  9. Ed Lee

    Ed Lee Utimate User

    Aug 16, 2009
    Jackson NC
    I'll add that oral hygiene includes cleaning the tongue in addition to brushing teeth and mouthwash usage ... if one wants to keep their instrument for years with fewer shop stopovers.
  10. gmonady

    gmonady Utimate User

    Jan 28, 2011
    Dayton, Ohio
    It's all about red rot or the de-zincification of brass. Red rot is a reaction with acidic solutions from our mouths which is produced naturally in our breath. This acid is hard to avoid, yet acid levels are increased by certain foods and especially by sodas. Acids used in instrument cleaning procedures also contribute to this. Rinsing the mouth with water is likely just as effective as brushing. As for bacteria and fungus in the tubing of the trumpet, all the brushing in the world will not prevent this build-up. Rather a monthly rinse with 91% isopropyl alcohol has been demonstrated to minimize this build up.

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