Proper oral care is an essential part of your daily routine, keeping your teeth and gums happy and healthy. The quality of your smile is a great indicator of your overall dental health, and something that you should be proud to show off to the world! There are many components to oral health, but there are a few easy steps you can follow to ensure your smile is always at its best.
#1: Brush Your Teeth
The most important tip for a healthier smile is one that you’ve probably known since you were a child. Dentists recommend you brush your teeth for two minutes at least twice a day, but many people also brush after every meal to remove leftover food before it is able to form plaque. Brushing correctly is also important; make sure to scrub every part of the surface of your teeth, including the backs as well. Brushing your tongue can also be beneficial, removing bacteria that leads to bad breath! Make sure you brush before bed and do NOT eat or drink anything (except water) after.
For places where your toothbrush can’t reach, you can turn to floss. The importance of flossing has become more apparent in the last few decades, and more and more options have become available. Traditional string floss is still widely used and is the very best way to remove plaque and food from between your teeth. You can also find disposable floss picks and water picks to help remove plaque.
#3: Avoid Sugary Drinks
Sugar-filled drinks are one of the leading causes of tooth decay, with one of the largest culprits being pop. Sugar reacts with bacteria and plaque in your mouth to create acid, which in turn destroys tooth enamel. Juice, flavored waters and many energy drinks also can cause problems. Replacing these items with water leads to additional saliva production, which is your body’s natural way of cleaning out bacteria and food particles from your mouth. If you do have one of these drinks, do not sip it over a period of hours. Drink fairly quickly and then rinse your mouth with water. This will help reduce the effects on your teeth.
#4: Use Fluoride
Using toothpastes or mouthwashes that contain fluoride can help strengthen tooth enamel. Although enamel cannot be brought back once it is destroyed, fluoride remineralizes and repairs weakened enamel to keep your teeth healthy and strong. Because of its restorative abilities, trace amounts of fluoride is also added to some tap water. Fluoride use from an early age can help prevent cavities from forming, but children should be supervised to prevent overuse. Too much fluoride may lead to small streaks or specks of white that, while not harmful, can permanently stain teeth.
#5: Visit the Dentist
Even with proper dental home care, it’s still important to visit the dentist every six months or so for a checkup and professional cleaning. Dentists can help you identify problems with your dental habits, as well as provide advice and recommendations for products or techniques you should try. Hygienists have special tools that allow them to remove plaque and bacteria that you can’t reach at home. Dental x-rays also give your dentist additional insight into the state of your oral health, allowing them to recognize and treat problems before they result in permanent damage or expensive procedures down the road. The goal is to catch issues while they are small and easier/cheaper to fix.
Ready to Get Started?
At Creekview Dental, we believe in the importance of a healthy smile! Whether you’re in need of dental care or simply looking for advice, our experienced team can help improve your oral health. Call or text (651) 738-8204, or contact us today to schedule your appointment.