A smile is one of the most noticeable features of a person and what makes a great smile is healthy teeth. Some people may neglect their oral hygiene either due to busy lives or an uncaring attitude. This can lead to serious oral diseases and can leave your teeth stained and rotten forever.
Dental hygiene is not only important from a health perspective but also from a social point of view. People notice your teeth while smiling, laughing, and talking. Unhealthy teeth can have a direct effect on how people perceive your personality and can lead to severe insecurity about one’s appearance.
To help you avoid this, we have compiled a list of the best dental hygiene tips to keep your teeth healthy and clean:
Brush at Least Twice a Day
This one goes without saying. The fundamental thing to do to ensure healthy teeth is to brush regularly. It is recommended to brush your teeth twice a day, especially after meals. Brushing gets out the food particles stuck on or in between your teeth and stops the accumulation of sticky food or bacteria in your mouth.
Know the Proper Way of Brushing
Although brushing should be regular, it should not be aggressive. If you brush your teeth too violently, you risk stripping the enamel off your teeth, leaving them exposed and weak without a protective layer. Brush thoroughly but gently, and make sure to reach all the little nooks and curves.
Pick the Right Brush
It is essential to pick the right kind of toothbrush. Brushes with hard bristles can damage the gums and the enamel layering if used too vigorously. Therefore, the ADA recommends using a soft-bristled toothbrush. Rinse your brush after every use and replace it every three months. Avoid sharing a toothbrush with other people.
Pick the Right Toothpaste
Many dental experts highly recommend using toothpaste with fluoride. Fluoride slows the breakdown of enamel. It also slows down the demineralization process and helps re-mineralize already damaged areas. Because of this, using fluoride toothpaste reduces the chances of tooth decay.
Remember to Floss Daily
Consider flossing just as important as brushing. Use a longer piece of floss so you can avoid touching your teeth with the used part of the floss over and over, as it can reinsert the bacteria in your mouth. Floss every day in a sawing motion.
Limit Your Sugary Food Consumption
Foods with high sugar content are harmful to your teeth. This sugar mixes with bacteria and saliva to form plaque which persists on your teeth and gives them a yellowish look. The sugar is then broken down by bacteria and acid is released. This acid dissolves your tooth enamel and causes cavities. Avoid eating an excess of sugary foods. If you do eat sugar, remember to brush immediately after eating.
Avoid Sugary or Acidic Drinks
Drinks like juices, sodas, and alcohol are highly acidic and can lead to enamel erosion and increased sensitivity. The acid dissolves the calcium and phosphate present in teeth, accelerating the process of tooth decay. Try to consume these drinks in a moderation or switch to alternatives that are less prone to damaging your teeth such as green or black tea without sugar.
Adopt a Teeth-Friendly Diet
Eat foods that have the potential to strengthen your teeth. Crunchy vegetables, cheese, yogurt, sugarless gum, and milk make the list of such foods. Fruits and vegetables that are rich in fiber keep your gums and teeth in good shape. Eat foods that contain calcium and fluoride to keep those pearly whites healthy.
Get in the Habit of Using Mouthwash
Mouthwash is convenient, easily usable, and incredibly helpful in maintaining good dental hygiene. Mouthwash can reach parts of your mouth that a brush or floss cannot. It gets rid of the remaining debris and bacteria, thoroughly cleans your tongue and teeth. Plus, rinsing with mouthwash gives you fresh breath.
Clean Your Tongue
When it comes to oral hygiene, taking care of the tongue is just as important as teeth and gums. Clean your tongue gently with the back of your toothbrush or a tongue scraper as often as you brush your teeth. This will get rid of bad breath and is a definite way of removing any harmful bacteria from your tongue.
Stay away from Cigarettes and Tobacco
People who smoke cigarettes, cigars, or pipes are not only at risk of several cardiovascular and lung diseases, but also many oral problems. Smoking and tobacco consumption causes an increased amount of tartar accumulation on one’s teeth and can lead to bad breath, stained teeth, and gum disease. The use of cigarettes and other tobacco products can also result in tooth loss.
Drink more Water
Drinking water has numerous health benefits. Not only does it hydrate your body and balance osmoregulation, but it also helps keep your teeth clean. Water washes away tiny food particles and dilutes the acid accumulated on your teeth due to leftover food molecules.
Drinking water that contains the right amount of fluoride is incredibly beneficial as it strengthens your teeth and can lessen the chances of tooth decay and cavities.
Avoid Using Your Teeth for Opening or Breaking Things
If you crack open nuts or remove bottle caps with your teeth, then you should stop right now. Using your teeth for such purposes can damage the enamel, leaving your teeth exposed. It can also weaken your teeth and increase the risk of chipping a tooth.
Visit Your Dentist at Least Twice a Year
Even if you take perfect care of your teeth, there is no substitute to a good old-fashioned visit to the dentist. Get regular checkups from your dentist to get a thorough inspection, procedures such as scaling and polishing, and professional advice on how to work on your trouble areas.
Putting effort into oral hygiene is unavoidable if you want strong, clean teeth that are free of any disease. With the tried and tested tips mentioned above, you will never have to nervously fidget again every time the cameraman asks you to say ‘cheese.’