Everyone can benefit from good dental hygiene. But, everyone doesn’t know always know the right ways to go about it.
This can even be the case for people who regularly see a dental practitioner. Doctor’s appointments usually consist of a cleaning, some x-rays, and a quick word about taking care of your teeth and gums at home. But, you may walk out having forgotten everything that was talked about at your last appointment to take care of your teeth and gums.
If you don’t know where to start, you’ve come to the right place! Read on for some important reminders about standard dental care to keep your teeth and gums healthy for years to come.
1. Brush Twice a Day
Brushing your teeth is the most important thing you can do to for your dental hygiene. It removes plaque and food that may cause tooth decay and gum disease.
Brush your teeth at least twice a day, preferably after breakfast and before bedtime. Use fluoride toothpaste, which helps fight cavities by strengthening tooth enamel.
Brush gently using circular motions, covering all surfaces of the teeth for about two minutes each time (or as long as it takes to sing Happy Birthday twice). If you use an electric or battery-powered toothbrush, make sure to replace the head at least every three months or sooner if it shows signs of wear and tear.
Don’t brush your teeth too hard. Brushing too hard can wear down enamel or damage the gums.
2. Floss Every Day
Flossing is one of the most important dental care tips you can do. It removes food particles and plaque from between the teeth, under the gum line, and along the gum line.
Flossing every day will help to prevent tooth decay, cavities, gingivitis, bad breath, and other problems. If you are having trouble with flossing because of tight spaces or unusually shaped teeth, try using a floss threader or a water flosser.
3. Drink Water to Stay Hydrated and Avoid Sugary Drink
Drinking water is essential for our dental care. However, most of us do not drink enough water because we are too busy or we drink sugary drinks instead.
It is proven that drinking water helps with avoiding cavities and gum disease. Drinking eight to ten glasses of water a day can reduce the risk of tooth decay, gingivitis, and periodontal disease.
Sugary drinks are a leading source of sugar in the American diet, accounting for about 25% of added sugars consumed. Sugar-filled beverages are the worst offenders, so it’s important to cut back on them.
Drinking sugary beverages increases your risk of tooth decay leading to chipped teeth, tooth erosion, and gum disease. If you have chipped teeth, ask your dentist about chipped tooth causes and treatments.
4. Keep Your Teeth Clean After Eating or Drinking Anything
Food and drinks contain sugars, which can cause bacteria to form on the teeth when not cleaned for a long time. These bacteria will produce acids that will break down the tooth enamel and cause cavities. The sugars from the food and drinks will also attract more bacteria to form on the teeth, which makes it even harder for you to brush off all of these harmful substances.
5. Eat Healthy Foods That Promote Oral Health
Healthy food is essential for the teeth. A diet that is rich in calcium, vitamin D, and phosphorus will help to keep your gums healthy as well.
Some of the best foods for dental care are:
Fruits and Vegetables
Green leafy vegetables like lettuce, spinach, kale, and collard greens are high in calcium, folate, and vitamin K. These also contain fiber which helps to keep the teeth clean.
Fruits and vegetables provide a variety of nutrients that contribute to dental health such as vitamins A, C, D, and E; minerals such as calcium, iron, and manganese; potassium; phosphorus; phytochemicals and antioxidants.
Fruits and vegetables contain no cavity-causing sugars or acids. For example, apples contain large amounts of fructose (fruit sugar), though they are part of a balanced diet. Sugars in fruits and vegetables are typically bound to fiber so they are not available to cause cavities.
Dairy products for oral health
Consume dairy products for oral health. Dairy provides calcium, vitamin D, and phosphorus which are important for the strength of teeth and gums. In addition, the intake of probiotics helps your immune system fight off bacteria that can cause cavities and gum disease.
6. Use Mouthwash After Brushing Your Teeth
Mouthwash is a liquid that you can use to clean your mouth and kill any bacteria that might be in it. It can be used after brushing your teeth and before going to bed at night. Mouthwash will help you keep your mouth clean, as well as prevent bad breath!
Your dental services can offer various brands of mouthwash with different effects. So be sure to choose the right one for you.
7. Avoid Breathing Through Your Mouth
Breathing through your mouth can lead to cavities and other dental problems. The air that you breathe out of your mouth is not filtered. It is full of bacteria, drools, and other harmful substances.
It is recommended to avoid breathing through your mouth by keeping it closed when you are not using it. To reduce the chance of contracting the flu or cold from someone who is sneezing or coughing, avoid breathing through your mouth when you are close to that person.
When someone is sneezing or coughing, cover your mouth with your arm. If you are around someone who has a fever, hand hygiene is critical.
Considering Your Dental Care
It’s never too late to start your dental care! Whether you’re young or old, it’s important to brush and floss every day, see a local dentist regularly, and replace sugary food with healthier options like fruits and vegetables. Also, don’t forget to hydrate yourself and avoid sugary drinks to keep your smile healthy and sparkling for years to come!
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