By West Coast Dental
Spring is here and it’s the perfect time to update your mouth care routine. It’s time to ditch your old toothbrushes and hard toothpaste and upgrade your smile.
April also happens to be Oral Health Month which includes National Dental Hygienist Week. Why not book an appointment with your hygienist today and get your teeth and gums in great shape?
Maintaining healthy teeth and gums is important, and there are some great ways to stay on top of your oral health to give yourself the gift of a perfect smile.
1. Out With the Old
Toss any old toothbrushes or ones where the bristles have splayed. Replace them with a new one, or even consider upgrading to an electric toothbrush. If you already have an electric toothbrush, you still need to replace the heads at least every three months — if not sooner.
According to the Oral Health Foundation, a2019 study found that people using an electric toothbrush have healthier teeth and gums and are keeping their teeth for longer. Electric toothbrushes are more effective at removing debris and build-up from around the teeth and gums.
2. Start Flossing
Flossing is extremely important for keeping your gums healthy. It helps to remove build-up from in-between the teeth. This buildup can irritate the gums, give you bad breath and lead to gingivitis or periodontal disease. As an alternative to flossing, you can use a water flosser or small interdental brushes that are varied in size.
3. Create a Daily Routine
Having a regular and effective mouth care routine is vital for maintaining healthy teeth and gums. You should be brushing your teeth and gums twice a day with an electric or manual toothbrush and using a fluoride toothpaste which helps to strengthen tooth enamel. You should also clean in between your teeth with floss, a water flosser or interdental brushes. Don’t forget to clean your tongue, inside of your cheeks and the roof of your mouth, too.
Finish off by cleansing your mouth with a fluoride mouthwash. This will freshen your breath and remove any residual debris.
4. Reduce Your Sugar Intake
If you want to keep your mouth healthy, you need to reduce your intake of sugar. This substance is one of the main causes of tooth decay. Bacteria in your mouth feeds on sugar which then turns into acid that attacks the enamel of your teeth. This causes the enamel to break down and decay. Decay can then lead to pain and, in some cases, tooth loss.
Cutting down on sugar means there is less acid made in your mouth that can attack the enamel. When you do eat sugar, you should brush your teeth immediately after with a fluoride toothpaste.
5. Stop Smoking and Vaping
The American Dental Association (ADA) stated that use of tobacco products and smoking accounts for around 20% of deaths in the U.S. and is the leading cause of preventable illnesses. Smoking can lead to lung, throat and mouth cancer. In 2019, the ADA also put out a statement opposing vapes expressing that they aren’t a safe alternative.
In addition to oral cancer, smoking can lead to tooth loss, gum disease and stained teeth. So, cutting down significantly or quitting will hugely improve the health of your mouth and reduce the risk of developing cancer.
6. Visit Your Dentist and Hygienist
Regular checkups with your dentist and cleanings with your hygienist are necessary for keeping your teeth and gums healthy. They will also be able to advise you on how to look after your mouth effectively and will be able to help you prevent dental problems from occurring.
7. Whiten Your Smile
Once you have a great daily routine in place and are having regular dental checkups, you might like to consider whitening your teeth to brighten your smile. Teeth whitening can be great for discolored and stained teeth and a great way to boost your confidence.
Oral Care at West Coast Dental
We can help you with all these suggestions at West Coast Dental. With locations throughout Southern California, you can schedule an appointment online at an office near you.
Canada Dental Hygienists Association (CDHA) – What is National Dental Hygienists Week?
Oral Health Foundation – Electric toothbrushes Win the Head-to-Head Against Manual in Record breaking New Study
American Dental Association (ADA) – Tobacco Use and Cessation