5 Top Tips For A Healthy Mouth
We have compiled an essential list of 5 basic steps to easily maintain good oral health. It’s simply a question of maintaining good habits and routine in your everyday life:
1. Get the right equipment for the job
You need to be brushing your teeth twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste to maintain healthy teeth and gums. Find yourself a good quality toothbrush – electric ones are the best. The brush heads should have soft bristles and remember to replace yours every three months.
Interdental brushes and dental floss clean the crevices that a brush can’t fully reach. This will more effectively reduce the build-up of food and plaque between your teeth that can eventually lead to cavities and gum disease.
Mouthwash and sugar-free chewing gum are both useful ways of freshening your breath and protecting your teeth between meals. It is best to avoid using mouthwash directly after brushing your teeth as it may wash away the fluoride contained within the toothpaste.
2. Technique is everything
Once you have the correct tools, you must make sure that you’re using them correctly. We see many clients who have a great toothbrush, but don’t brush their teeth for long enough, or brush them too hard. Here is what you should be doing:
Hold the toothbrush at a 45-degree angle pointed toward the gum line and use gentle, circular motions over each individual tooth. Brush each tooth around 10 times and keep it gentle. Brushing too hard or using stiff bristles can actually have the opposite effect, damaging teeth and eroding the gum line.
3. Attend routine dental examinations
We dentists can spot potential problems early on in their development before they become a larger issue. If you have a dental-related concern, book that appointment as soon as you can without delay. Put simply, dental problems do not magically disappear. Postponing a visit to us will exacerbate the issue, increasing both your discomfort and the cost of treatment. There is also greater potential for infections to spread to other areas of the mouth and body. Therefore, act quickly on your concerns!
Sticking to a regular schedule of check-ups every few months will give you peace of mind. Our hygienists will remove tartar and staining from your teeth that you may have missed. Additionally, it is worth noting that many health conditions manifest themselves in the mouth, therefore you’re additionally being screened for potential wider problems such as high blood pressure and oral cancer.
4. Keep to a healthy diet
We all know this one. A varied diet that is rich in vitamins, minerals, and fresh fruit and vegetables is important for every single aspect of our general health; gum disease is no exception.
Sugar intake ideally needs to be kept to a minimum as sugar creates excessive acid which aggressively attacks the tooth enamel, rapidly increasing your chances of cavities and tooth decay. Try eating lots of crunchy fruit and vegetables like apples, carrots and celery – these are both saliva boosters and effective tooth scrubbers. To avoid unnecessarily exposing our teeth throughout the day to continuous acid in our mouths, it is best to avoid snacking and stick to eating during your three mealtimes only.
Drink more tap water – seriously, just do it. As well as washing away lingering food particles and giving your teeth a miniature top-up of fluoride each time you sip, you will also feel hydrated with more energy, less bloating and fresher skin. Water is our most fundamental dietary requirement, so make sure you are getting plenty of it.
5. Kick the habit
Stopping smoking is an obvious health benefit for many reasons. With regards to your teeth, the nicotine and tar in cigarettes will not only stain your teeth yellow, soaking deeply into the enamel, but they will literally eat away at your gums, creating pockets of space around the teeth. This effect can make the teeth appear longer with dark spaces around them. A ripe environment for bacteria and plaque is created through smoking; the damaged tissue degrades the bone supporting the teeth, which means that your risk of tooth loss increases over time. Smoking makes it very difficult to reverse the effects of gum disease. Additionally, the chemicals found in tobacco leave you at a very high risk of contracting oral cancer, as well as other cancers in the body. In short, kick the habit and feel a million percent better!
If you have any concerns or questions regarding what you’ve read above, please don’t hesitate to book an appointment here at the practice. We would love to see you and alleviate any concerns you may have.
Our friendly team is available on 020 8995 0298 and remember the tip above
– don’t put off until tomorrow what you could do today!