Maintaining good oral health can be a challenge. There are obvious steps you can take to keep your teeth and gums healthy, but knowing which techniques to include in your daily oral health routine can be confusing.
Luckily, our dental hygienist, Tessa, loves to share her knowledge on improving oral health and how to prevent oral problems from occurring. Here are Tessa’s seven key points for maintaining your oral health.
Brush Your Teeth at Least Twice a Day
Although this might seem like the most obvious step to achieving optimum oral health, brushing your teeth twice a day for at least two minutes can often be overlooked.
Brushing your teeth twice a day helps reduce dental plaque, which in return helps reduce harmful bacteria from growing in your mouth. Research has shown that brushing less than twice a day can significantly increase the production of cavities.
So, be smart and brush those gorgeous teeth.
Adopt the Right Technique When Brushing Your Teeth
While brushing your teeth twice daily for a minimum of two minutes is essential, you’ll still need to adopt the right cleaning technique if you’re to improve your oral health.
All too often, spots between teeth can be missed leading to the development of harmful bacteria in the mouth. Be sure to gently clean your teeth properly using a toothbrush and a decent amount of toothpaste. And for a truly clean feel, make sure to lightly brush your gumline and tongue, too.
When rushed, it can be easy to overlook oral care, but remember; healthy teeth and gums make for a healthy body.
Choose the Right Toothbrush
There are so many toothbrushes to choose from these days, it can be daunting selecting the right one to meet your needs. From thin-handled brushes with hard bristles to chunkier models with ultra-soft heads, the search can seem never-ending.
If you’re looking at improving your oral health, we recommend using a soft or ultra-soft toothbrush. This will ensure that your teeth receive a gentle, more comfortable clean.
A softer toothbrush will also protect your gums. Receding gums, which develop more easily when brushing with the wrong toothbrush, will be more sensitive to changes in temperature. Receding gums are also softer and more sensitive which, in turn, can enhance dental problems.
Know When to Replace Your Toothbrush
We’re all guilty of brushing our teeth with a toothbrush that we should’ve thrown away a long time ago! A key step to improving your oral health is knowing when’s the right time to discard your old toothbrush in favour of a new one.
As soon as the bristles on your toothbrush lose their strength and start splitting, it’s time to replace it. Make sure you always have a replacement toothbrush (or head for an electrical toothbrush) at home. We advise you to replace your toothbrush every three months.
Cleaning Between Your Teeth
Maintaining healthy teeth and gums isn’t just about brushing twice daily. It doesn’t matter how well or how often you brush your teeth, not every spot is reachable with just a toothbrush. You need an extra hand.
Introducing interdental tools, such as floss, interdental brushes or oral gel, into your oral care routine will help deliver a greater, all-round clean. Cleaning your teeth like this daily will help prevent gingivitis and periodontitis.
Avoid Foods That Can Damage Your Teeth
When it comes to improving oral health, the modern, Western diet has a lot to answer for. From sugar-packed cakes and sweets to calorie-laden fizzy drinks, many of the foods we consume have been shown to cause a myriad of oral health issues, including tooth decay.
Often there are overly high levels of sugar included in our daily intake of food and drink. To cut down on your sugar intake, try reading the small print on the back of food packaging and take a closer look at the amount of sugar in each item.
Sweets and chewing gum with sugar are some of the worst culprits. This is due to the duration these products stay in your mouth. The longer sugar is in your mouth, the quicker tooth decay can develop and increase the risk of developing caries.
Regularly Visit a Dental Professional
Whilst taking care of your oral health might seem like a solo duty, there is always help on hand.
Even if you think there is nothing wrong with your oral hygiene, you should still make an appointment to visit your dentist or dental hygienist at least once a year. A specialist will be able to deliver an expert verdict on your oral health and point out any significant problems at an early stage.
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Remember; healthy mouth, healthy body.