Footballers have worryingly poor teeth

Professional footballers have worryingly poor teeth that could be affecting their performance on the pitch, say dentists.

Professional footballers have worryingly poor teeth that could be affecting their performance on the pitch, say dentists.

Their study on players at eight clubs in England and Wales, in the British Journal of Sports Medicine, showed nearly four out of 10 had cavities.

Regularly consuming sugary foods is one possible explanation.

The dentists, from the International Centre for Evidence-Based Oral Health at University College London, examined 187 players’ sets of teeth.

They found 53% had dental erosion, 45% were bothered by the state of their teeth and 7% said it affected their ability to train or play.

Around 40% had tooth decay, compared with 30% of people of a similar age in the general population.

Prof Ian Needleman, one of the researchers: “These are individuals who otherwise invest so much in themselves so it’s a surprising finding. There are two main groups – some have a catastrophic effect, they have very severe abscesses that stop them in their tracks and they cannot play or train.”

“There’ll be others experiencing pain affecting sleeping or sensitivity every time they take a drink. At this level of athlete, even small differences can be quite telling.”

Nutrition is one of the primary suspects with frequent consumption of sugary or acidic foods during training potentially accounting for tooth decay and erosion.

A lot of air in the mouth during exercise can also dry it out so there is less protection from saliva.

Prof Needleman said that while “these findings are worrying” clubs were giving dental health a “higher priority” and were educating their players.

Previous research has shown “striking” levels of bad teeth in athletes competing at the London 2012 Olympic Games.

The teeth of athletes at London 2012 were broadly in the same state as those of footballers.

Players from Manchester United, Hull, Southampton, Swansea, West Ham, Brighton, Cardiff and Sheffield United all took part in the study.

Stijn Vandenbroucke, the head of medicine and sports science at West Ham, said there were “clear preventive benefits for athletes and club”.

He added: “Oral health is an area where many athletes have greater problems than the general population so it has been a massive achievement for so many professional football clubs to collaborate with each other to help us understand the scale of this problem better.”

5 Simple Tips for Getting in Shape

Getting in shape shouldn’t be a chore.

Getting in shape shouldn't be a chore.

In fact, there are many easy ways to incorporate exercise into your everyday activities or focus on things you already love to do.
If you’re busy, don’t let it stop you. Try and fit more activity into the things you already do every day – whether at home or at work:

1. Just Move More

Choose the stairs. Youíll get a workout and avoid the awkward elevator rides. For a more strenuous workout, go up and down the stairs for 15 minutes.
Park farther away. Running errands, at work or dropping off kids, park as far away as you can to add a few more steps into your day.
Take walking breaks. Leave your desk occasionally to take a break to walk outside when the weatherís nice or stay inside and explore different areas of the building. This will give you a little stress break and let your eyes rest after staring at a computer screen. Also, it will add in a few more steps and youíll feel more rejuvenated when you get back to your desk.

2. Do What You Love

Maybe you enjoy rollerblading, perfecting your garden or snow skiing with your kids. When you enjoy exercise, youíre more likely to keep it up. You might want to try:

Walking with friends
Trying a new yoga class
Picking up snowshoeing or cross-country skiing
Joining a local recreation basketball or racquetball league
Going swimming at a nearby pool
Shooting hoops
Participating in a dance class
Biking around a local park with your kids

3. Set Small, Realistic and Specific Goals

If you decide to pick up jogging, start with running for 30 seconds and walking for two and a half minutes. The next week, run for 45 seconds and walk for one minute. Before you know it, you will be running for two-three minutes before you need to take a short walking break.

And if you have some setbacks, thatís OK. In the end, youíll see success if you stay consistent.

 

4. Plan for the Long Haul

Doctors recommend exercising for 30 minutes at least five times a week at a moderate level of activity (like gardening or walking). If that sounds overwhelming, build on small goals month-by-month.

5. Recruit Help from Friends

What else is going to help you reach your goals? Stay patient and positive until you get there ñ and you will get there.

Life changes are much easier to manage with a group of close friends and family supporting you. If you know someone whoís already active, ask them for tips or be brave and join them! In the end, it doesnít really matter how you exercise, whatës most important is finding a way to exercise doing what you love and making it a part of your daily routine.

Why short bursts of activity boost fitness in the body

High-intensity training (HIIT) has become popular with athletes and amateurs and now scientists know why.

High-intensity training (HIIT) has become popular with athletes and amateurs and now scientists know why

Short bouts of intense exercise could be the key to staying in shape after researchers found that even just a few minutes of strenuous activity can make muscles work harder.

High-intensity interval training (HIIT) has become popular with athletes and amateurs and has clear visible benefits.

But sports scientists have always struggled to understand how a short amount of activity can produce similar effects as endurance training.

Now, researchers at the Karonlinska Institute in Sweden have found that even small levels of intensive exercise boost the production of mitochondriañ the cellís batteries ñ which enhance muscle endurance.

Volunteers who cycled for 30 seconds as fast as possible, six times, triggered the effect, suggesting just a few minutes is all it takes for results to begin to show. Tissue samples of their muscles showed benefits.

ìOur study shows that three minutes of high-intensity exercise breaks down calcium channels in the muscle cells,î says Professor Hakan Westerblad, principal investigator at Karolinska Institutetís Department of Physiology and Pharmacology.

ìThis causes a lasting change in how the cells handle calcium, and is an excellent signal for adaptation, such as the formation of new mitochondria.î

Can 20 seconds of high intensity exercise really beat a session in the gym?

Mitochondria are like the cellís power plants, and changes that stimulate the formation of new mitochondria increase muscle endurance.

However the researchers also found that anti-oxidants like vitamin E and C can stop the effect.

ìOur study shows that antioxidants remove the effect on the calcium channels, which might explain why they can weaken muscular response to training,î added Professor Westerblad.

The study was published in the journal PNAS.