Keep Your Teeth And Gums Healthy – Achieving healthy teeth and gums requires deliberate action in self-care. You’ve got to be mindful of your daily habits while also making sure that you are using the right oral care program. Over time, these personal efforts result in a brilliant smile, healthy gums, strong teeth, and potentially thousands of dollars saved in dentist’s fees.
Keeping your teeth and gums clean is good not just for your oral health but also for your overall body health. Researchers established that an unhealthy mouth can increase the risk of severe health problems such as stroke, heart attack, poorly controlled diabetes, and preterm labor. This is more so true for people who have gum disease (bleeding, swelling, or receding gums usually due to growth of bacteria). It is important that you understand the importance of your oral health and how it is connected to your overall health.
In this article, we offer 10 tried and tested tips for keeping your teeth and gums healthy.
1. Brush twice each day
‘Brush twice daily’ may sound like a kindergarten anthem, but you’ll be surprised how many people who don’t follow this advice. Dental health experts emphasize that you brush once in the morning and before you go to bed. Use a timer to make sure that each session lasts at least 2 minutes so you can get rid of all the food particles and bacteria. Parents should teach this rule to children early on in life.
2. Floss your mouth daily
There is no understating the importance of daily flossing for optimal oral health. Make sure you floss each night before you brush to dislodge anything that your toothbrush may not be able to reach. This makes sure that small particles that can cause decay are not left between your teeth. While your gums may hurt when you get started with this routine, you’ll get comfortable with time. Ensure that your floss is particularly focused on tight spaces that may be difficult for your toothbrush to clean.
3. Replace your toothbrush every few months
Your toothbrush is only meant for temporary use – which can range anywhere from 3 to 6 months. If you don’t change your toothbrush within this duration, the bristles will likely become frayed. This essentially makes the toothbrush less effective for removing food debris and plaque around the teeth. Needless to say, this could in turn lead to adverse effects such as overgrowth of bacteria and ultimately bad breath.
4. Use supplementary dental hygiene products
While additional dental hygiene products are not a necessity, they can help improve your oral health and prevent costly problems. A few examples of products that can provide extra help include mouthwash, interdental cleaners, irrigators, and tongue cleaners. Make sure you are using these products along with proper (and daily) brushing and flossing.
5. Focus on a healthy diet
Like with any other part of the body, diet has its role to play when it comes to oral health. Dental health experts recommend that you focus on a diet that is rich in fruits, vegetables, nuts, legumes, and fatty fat. This provides all the essential nutrients you need for optimal dental health, as well as suppresses inflammation. In addition to improving your oral health, adopting healthier food choices results in better overall health.
6. Stay hydrated throughout the day
Proper hydrated is not just good for your overall health but also helps ensure optimal saliva flow. This is important given that saliva helps move food particles in our mouth, preventing lodging in your teeth that can fuel bacteria growth. The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine recommends that men take up to 3.7 liters, and women up to 2.7 liters of fluid per day.
7. Quit smoking
In the context of oral health, smoking can cause superficial tooth staining, gum disease, tooth loss, and even oral cancer. Research also shows that smoking can greatly increase your risk of stroke, heart disease, and lung cancer. One of the best things you can do for your oral and overall health is to quit smoking. There are many help guides available on the internet on how to quit smoking.
8. Attend regular dental check-ups
Dentists are trained oral health professionals. They know what optimal oral health looks like and can detect signs of problems early on. For this reason, it is important that you pay a visit to your dentist at least once every 6 months. Dental cleanings (which should be conducted twice each year) can help remove any buildup of tartar or plaque to ensure healthy teeth and gums.
9. Regularly examine your mouth
Oral health problems can present in between visits to a dentist. To prevent major issues, make sure you do a scan of the inside of your mouth at least every now and then. Check your gums and teeth for anything that seems changed or unusual. This can help you detect issues that need your dentist’s attention before they turn out into something big.
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As it goes, prevention is better than cure. Taking proactive steps to ensure optimal teeth and gum health will save you from serious issues such as tooth loss, and costly dental treatments. Furthermore, there’s a clear link between your oral health and your overall health. So keep in mind that everything you do to ensure proper dental health is good for your body as well.