Each part of the human body works together and relies upon each other to function as a whole. That’s why it’s crucial to maintain good oral health, just as you would the health of any other body part. The quality of your oral health can affect the overall health of your body. Aside from the habits you learn from a young age, such as brushing, flossing, and visiting the dentist regularly, there are other things you can do to improve your oral health.
Here are five tips, based on science, which can help you achieve optimal oral health:
Many of us are mindful of what we use to brush our teeth, such as the softness of the brush and the toothpaste we use. However, you should also be mindful of when to brush your teeth. For example, did you know brushing too soon after eating or drinking can harm your teeth? That’s because the acids produced from food and drinks soften tooth enamel, making it more susceptible to damage.
Specifically, eating citrus fruits like oranges and tomatoes can make your tooth enamel softer for up to an hour after eating. So, brushing your teeth right after consuming these items may do more harm than good.
The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends waiting at least an hour after eating or drinking before brushing your teeth. This way, you give your saliva enough time to break down the acids.
You should brush your teeth for two minutes at least twice a day. Use gentle circular motions and brush on the inside surfaces of your teeth and tongue and the outside surfaces.
A soft-bristled brush is recommended to avoid gum recession. However, a brush with stiff bristles can be too abrasive for your teeth’s enamel and gums. You can also try an electric toothbrush, eliminating the need to brush as hard.
Sugary drinks can cause cavities, damage your enamel, and lead to tooth decay. Drink water instead to rinse food particles and help keep your mouth healthy.
Studies have continually shown how sugars can lead to an increased risk for cavities. Sweet drinks, candies, and desserts promote plaque growth, a sticky film of bacteria that clings to your teeth. When these bacteria mix with food particles and form acids, they can eat away at your tooth enamel, leading to cavities.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) also encourages people to limit their consumption of alcoholic beverages to help reduce their risk of developing gum disease.
Water helps rinse food particles and plaque from your teeth, keeping them clean and healthy. It also helps keep your mouth moist, which is vital to oral health. In addition, drinking water throughout the day will help you avoid sugary drinks and keep your mouth healthy.
Using a pea-sized amount of toothpaste containing fluoride is also recommended. Fluoride is a mineral that helps prevent cavities.
If you’re prone to grinding your teeth at night or clenching your jaw, a night guard can help protect your teeth from damage. It’s best to get custom night guards from reputable stores, like Shopremi.com, to make sure they fit well and don’t cause any additional damage.
If you have sensitive teeth, using toothpaste for sensitive teeth can help reduce pain and discomfort. These kinds of toothpaste typically contain ingredients like potassium nitrate, which helps to soothe the nerves in your teeth.
Flossing is essential for keeping your gums healthy, but it’s even more critical if you have braces. Be sure to carefully floss around brackets and wires to remove any food or plaque that could get stuck.
Smoking is one of the most important risk factors for developing gum disease. In addition, smokers are more prone to gingivitis, an inflammatory gum disease. Gingivitis can lead to issues like periodontitis, a gum infection. Left untreated, this infection can destroy the bone supporting your teeth.
Gingivitis occurs when irritating plaque builds up and hardens below the gum line. The plaque buildup inflames the gums so that they bleed easily. When this develops into a periodontitis infection, the infection spreads from the soft tissue to the bone, causing your teeth to loosen or fall out.
So, if you’re a smoker, one of the best things you can do for your oral health is to quit smoking. Many resources are available to help you quit, so talk to your doctor or dentist about the best option.
Some dentists use an ultrasonic cleaner to remove tartar and bacteria buildup on their dental tools. This device uses high-frequency vibrations to break up the tartar so it can be removed more easily.
It’s non-abrasive and gentler on your night guard to ensure that you can use the dental protection accessory for a long time. It’s also more effective than brushes or cleaning tablets.
Brushing your teeth and flossing daily are obvious steps to improve oral health. However, it’s also best to visit your dentist for a professional cleaning at least once a year. This way, you can be sure to remove any hidden plaque or tartar buildup that could lead to gum disease.
Nonetheless, there are more things you can do to keep your mouth clean and healthy. Follow these tips to ensure you’re doing all you can for a healthy smile.