Oral health plays a role in your overall well-being. Oral health counts whether eating, smiling for a photo, or going about your daily activities. For this, the mouth requires constant care and attention. Oral hygiene practices boost the health of our teeth. Healthy lifestyle practices contribute to this, too. Read on to identify five tips to help you stay on top of your oral health.
At-Home Oral Hygiene Routine
A healthy mouth starts at home. Incorporating small but impactful daily habits into your lifestyle will improve your oral health. Brush your teeth with fluoride toothpaste twice a day to remove plaque. The fluoride ions in the toothpaste also form a protective layer on the enamel that is resistant to decay. Two minutes produces a higher efficacy than brushing for one minute. Replace your toothbrush every three to four months to avoid bacteria build-up or when the bristles are frayed.
Even though brushing removes dental biofilm on the surface, it is ineffective for in-between teeth. The bacteria in this film contribute to gum disease and tooth decay. If left untreated, the plaque hardens to a calculus that is difficult to remove. In the U.S., untreated dental disease costs nearly $45 billion in productivity. To prevent this, dentists recommend daily flossing, as it cleans in between your teeth.
Mouthwash is an adjunct to brushing and flossing since it reaches under the gum. It is best to use an alcohol-free mouth rinse. Alcohol dries out the mouth and lowers the acid-base balance. It creates an environment for bad bacteria to thrive. The bacteria contribute to bad breath.
Mouth wash is recommended for use by people suffering from active gum disease. It is also advised for active tooth decay and wisdom tooth gum pain. CDC statistics show that periodontal disease affects 46% of the adult population. The use of mouthwash helps control these diseases. This is because they contain anticavity and antiseptic properties.
Routine Dental Check-Ups
Regular preventive dental care helps catch issues before they become worse and more costly to treat. A dentist checks your teeth for signs of tooth decay, gum disease, and oral cancer. These conditions can affect your oral health without you knowing it. Approximately 3.5 billion people around the world suffer from dental diseases. This is true according to research conducted by the World Health Organization (WHO). Regular dentist visits also help detect underlying medical conditions. These include diabetes and kidney disease.
Follow Dentist’s Recommended Treatment Plan
In some cases, you may show symptoms of gum disease or have a chronic medical condition known to increase your risk for gum disease. Your dentist may recommend additional treatment and home care strategies in this event. Follow their recommended treatment plan. If need be, getting orthodontic care can help improve your mouth and teeth function. One-third of all orthodontic patients are adults, so do not dismiss a crooked smile even if you think you’re past the age to get braces. Crooked and crowded teeth do not only affect how your smile looks, but they can also impact the way you feel.
A Healthy Diet
Most people know that high-sugar foods and drinks are unhealthy but are unaware of their impact on teeth. The bacteria in plaque feed on sugar and starch found in junk food and form an acid. This acid attacks the enamel on the teeth, which causes tooth decay. To prevent this, choose snacks that are low in sugar. Additionally, drink plenty of water rather than sugar-rich soft drinks.
Calcium-fortified foods promote healthy teeth and reduce the risks of tooth loss. These foods include eggs, milk, and other dairy products. Crisp fruits and raw vegetables such as celery help clean plaque and freshen your breath.
Brushing twice a day is important to maintaining oral hygiene. So does daily flossing and eating healthily. Visiting a dentist regularly can help avoid complications down the line as well. Follow these tips to improve your oral health habits today!