You must practice good oral hygiene every day to maintain a healthy smile. Using an antimicrobial mouthwash, and brushing and flossing at least once a day can help prevent disease-causing bacteria from reproducing in your mouth and causing tooth decay. Bacteria can enter your digestive and respiratory tracts through your mouth, and some of these bacteria can cause disease. Inside our mouths, billions of bacteria reside. Many of these bacteria form plaque and cause tooth decay (cavities) and gingivitis, which can progress to periodontal (gum) disease. Without proper oral hygiene, bacteria levels can rise to the point where they can cause oral infections such as tooth decay and gum disease.
Oral health is linked to overall health. If you have a mouth infection, your bloodstream can carry the bacteria to other parts of your body, potentially leading to heart disease and stroke. Taking care of your teeth and gums is an important part of maintaining long-term overall health. Oral hygiene is critical for maintaining healthy teeth and gums. You should also visit your dentist regularly for dental exams and cleanings.
The best way to maintain healthy teeth and gums is to practice good oral hygiene. Here are some things you can do to keep your mouth healthy and your teeth strong:
- Brush your teeth for two minutes at least twice a day with a soft-bristled brush and fluoride toothpaste. It is important that you brush your teeth before going to bed.
- Flossing teeth once a day is just as important as brushing. It helps prevent cavities between teeth.
- Your tongue acts as a sponge for bacteria. When brushing your teeth, don’t forget to brush your tongue as well.
- Mouth rinse helps in the removal of any residual plaque or food particles that may have been left behind after brushing and flossing. To help strengthen tooth enamel, a fluoride mouth rinse is recommended.
- Drink more water and keep sugary beverages to a minimum. Water continues to remain the healthiest beverage. Drinking water can help remove of some of the negative effects of sticky and acidic foods and beverages in between brushes.
- If you must drink sugary beverages, use a straw to help reduce the contact of sweetened beverages with your teeth.
- Avoid smoking, chewing tobacco, and drinking alcohol. Tobacco use results in tooth discoloration, plaque/tartar buildup, gum disease, tooth loss, and oral cancer. Alcohol dries out your mouth, reducing saliva production and allowing bacteria and plaque to thrive.
- Eat crunchy fruits and vegetables because they contain more fiber and are also best for your teeth. Avoid ready-to-eat foods and overly processed foods.
- Replace your toothbrush every three to four months, (or sooner if the bristles are worn or splayed).
- Consider dental sealants. Dental sealants are a special coating that is typically applied to newly emerged molars in children, but they can also be applied to adult teeth. They fill in the loops and fault lines in the teeth, preventing plaque buildup and cavities.
- To protect your oral health, schedule a teeth cleaning and oral examination every six months. A dentist can not only remove plaque and check for cavities, but they can also identify potential problems and offer treatment options.
Taking care of your teeth and gums is an investment in your overall health. Preventative dentistry is less expensive than restorative or emergency dentistry. In the long run, good oral hygiene can save you time, worry, and money. Regular dental visits also help your dentist detect and treat problems before they worsen. We understand that dental care can be expensive, but Cunning Dental Group offers affordable payment options for all dental treatments. Reach out to us today at (855) 328-6646 to schedule an appointment and have a stress-free smile.