15 Easy Ways You Can Improve Your Oral Health
Having a great smile is not as hard as you think, however, you have to always keeps some factors in mind so you don’t have to suffer through pain or an unnecessary visit to the dentist. Having poor oral hygiene can lead to a variety of dental and medical problems in the future such as gum disease, infection, bone loss, heart disease, strokes and more.
Knowing that small things can make big changes to your oral health, we thought we should share 15 ways you can improve your dental health easily:
- Know How To Brush Properly
One of the easiest steps to do to help your teeth keep clean. When brushing your teeth, position the bristles at an angle of 45 degrees near the gum line. Both the gum line and the tooth surface should be in contact with the bristles. Brush the outer surfaces of the teeth using a back-and-forth, up-and-down motion, making sure to be done gently to avoid bleeding. To clean the inside surfaces of the teeth and gums, place the bristles at a 45-degree angle again and repeat the back-and-forth, up-and-down motion. Lastly, brush the surfaces of your tongue and the roof of your mouth to remove bacteria, which might cause bad breath.
Try to brush at least twice a day to prevent acid buildup from the breakdown of food by bacteria. However, if your work or activities prevent you from doing this, thoroughly rinse your mouth with water after eating to minimize the amount of food that would serve as a substrate for the bacteria.
- Choosing The Right Toothbrush
You want a brush with soft bristles. With the proper technique, it should last two to three months. It’s ready to be replaced when you notice bent bristles, but don’t wait that long. Even a straight bristle tip can become blunted instead of rounded and cause injury to the teeth and gums.
We know, it’s a chore and a lot of times forgetful after brushing if rushing out the door or heading to bed. However, flossing can help you remove food particles and other detrimental substances that cleaning regularly cannot. Flossing allows you to reach deep between your teeth where the toothbrush bristles cannot reach or even mouthwash cannot wash away. We recommend flossing at least once a day.
- Brush Your Teeth Before Bed
It’s no secret that the general recommendation is to brush at least twice a day. Still, many of us continue to neglect to brush our teeth at night. But cleaning them before bed gets rid of the germs and plaque that accumulate throughout the day.
- Quit Smoking
Doing this will be a big favor to your teeth. One, it will save you from oral cancer and periodontal complications. Two, it will save you from the many ill effects caused by the agents used to mask the smell of tobacco. For example, if you smoke a cigarette, you may use candies, tea or coffee to mask the smoky breath and odor. Combining these doubles the amount of damage caused.
- Cut Back On Sugar
Sugar is a major culprit in tooth decay. It fuels bacteria and acidity in your mouth, causing plaque to form and eat away at your enamel and gums. Your pearly whites are hit with up to 20 minutes of acid production for every sugar fest you indulge in, from sweetened coffee in the morning to ice cream at night. To avoid being among the 20% of people in the United States who face tooth decay every time they look in the mirror, try to cut down on sugary treats, and aim to brush and floss after every meal or snack.
- Drink Less Coffee, Soda, And Alcohol
Although these beverages contain a high level of phosphorous, which is a necessary mineral for a healthy mouth, too much phosphorous can deplete the body’s level of calcium. Drinking this on a regular basis causes dental hygiene problems such as tooth decay and gum disease. Beverages containing additives such as corn syrup and food dye can make pearly white teeth appear dull and discolored. Therefore, it is best to choose beverages like milk, which helps strengthen teeth and build stronger enamel, giving you a healthy, beautiful smile and water which hydrates your body longer than sugary drinks.
- Drink Water, Lots Of Water
Water continues to be the best beverage for your overall health; this includes oral health, too. Also, as a rule of thumb, Schwartz recommends drinking water after every meal. This can help wash out some of the adverse effects of sticky and acidic foods and beverages in between brushes.
- Improve Your Diet
You need plenty of calcium for your teeth. It is essential for the teeth as well as your bones. It is better to drink milk, fortified orange juice and to eat yogurt, broccoli, cheese, and other dairy products. You can also take a calcium supplement, taking different doses according to your age and necessity as per prescription. Calcium and Vitamin D are necessary for maintaining the health of gums and teeth. Vitamin B complex is also essential for the protection of gums and teeth from cracking and bleeding. Copper, zinc, iodine, iron, and potassium are also required for maintaining healthy dental hygiene.
- Eat crunchy fruits and vegetables
Ready-to-eat foods are convenient, but perhaps not so much when it comes to your teeth. Eating fresh, crunchy produce not only contains more healthy fiber, but it is also the best choice as far as your teeth are concerned. So try to avoid the overly soft processed stuff, stop cutting things into tiny pieces, and get those jaws working.
- Visit Your Dentist At Least Twice A Year
You should visit your dentist at least twice a year to have a full hygiene treatment performed. Also at these appointments, a comprehensive exam is taken with x-rays to help detect and prevent future dental procedures from occurring.
- Mouthwash Is Your Friend
Mouthwash is not particularly necessary, and not all mouthwashes are useful. Mouthwashes containing Listerine our chlorine dioxide are very helpful because they help to kill and maintain the bacteria in your mouth. It can contribute to maintaining good breath as well as keeping your teeth strong. Mouthwash cannot do all the work, but if you are already brushing, flossing, visiting the dentist and eating well, mouthwash is the cherry on top that will make your dental health great.
- Pain Is Not Normal
If you are having tooth and jaw pain, make an appointment with your dentist as soon as possible. Your dentist needs to diagnose the underlying cause and correct it before it turns into a greater problem.
- Dental Health Is Not A Luxury; It’s A Necessity
Everyone understands that you should take care of your teeth to avoid toothaches, maintain your looks and keep dental bills at bay. Many people, however, don’t understand how important oral health is to our total health picture. Tooth problems can lead to diabetes, heart disease, systemic infections, an inability to eat or speak properly and other maladies – some life-threatening. Crooked or crowded teeth can contribute to gum disease that can eventually lead to tooth loss. Straight teeth are no longer just for looks.
- Clean Your Tongue
Clean the surface of your tongue daily. By using a professional tongue cleaner, you remove many bacteria that otherwise live, particularly on the rougher top surface of your tongue. These can contribute to bad breath (halitosis) and negatively affect your dental health.
Careful oral hygiene is the key to not spending too much time at the dentist’s office. The answer lies in small daily practices that can improve your overall health and general health of your mouth and teeth.