5 Steps to Improve Your Oral Hygiene
Everybody wants to have a beautiful, healthy smile, not just for aesthetic reasons, but to save money on restorative procedures down the road. Regular visits to your dentist as well as cleanings twice a year are a major part in the prevention of tooth decay and gum disease. However, if you hope to avoid necessary dental reconstruction down the line, then good dental hygiene at home is the best medicine.
1. Brush Properly
You may underestimate how important brushing properly is to your dental health. If you’ve ever seen a dentist, then you’ve most likely been told to brush twice daily, and for at least two minutes per session. What you might not have known is the importance of using the proper technique and the right kind of brush.
When buying a toothbrush, be sure to choose one with soft bristles as these are less likely to irritate your gums when scrubbing the hard to reach places at the base of your teeth. Additionally, make sure to hold your brush at a 45 degree angle to your teeth, and brush in gentle, short strokes. Brushing like this lets you scrub off the greatest amount of bacteria, without the risk of damaging soft tissues
2. Use an Electric Brush
Electric brushes have been found by the American Dental Association to remove more plaque than a traditional toothbrush. The oscillation of these brushes is more effective their stationary counterparts, and is generally better for brushers who don’t commit to the full two minutes suggested when brushing twice a day.
3. Use Fluoride Toothpaste and Mouthwash
Unless otherwise instructed by your dentist, fluoride toothpastes and mouthwashes are the best supplies for preventing the buildup of decay-causing bacteria. Fluoride in your toothpaste and mouthwash not only eliminates plaque buildup on your teeth, but strengthens tooth enamel, hardening it against future decay.
Dentists and hygienists have been known to advocate flossing until blue in the face, and for good reason. Flossing is the best way to prevent food and bacterial buildup in the spaces between your teeth that toothbrushes simply can’t reach. It doesn’t take much, but most people need to floss at least once a day to prevent tartar buildup.
5. Eat Healthy and Avoid Hazards
Though it may seem unrelated, eating healthy foods has been linked to better dental hygiene, so be sure to incorporate plenty of healthy foods into your diets. Make sure to limit the amounts of harmful foods you eat as well, like coffee, soda, and citrus, as foods high in acid and sugar lead to tooth decay and bacteria buildup.
Additionally, avoiding tobacco use and excessive consumption of alcohol will not only ensure healthier teeth, but whiter teeth too.
Contact Our Rancho Cordova, CA Practice to Learn More
To learn more about good dental hygiene practices and to schedule one of your yearly cleanings, contact us at Scott P. Churchill, DMD. We want to help you reach the peak of dental health and achieve your perfect smile!