Tips for Proper Dental Care
January 21, 2019
It is easy to take our teeth for granted and often it isn’t until we are experiencing dental pain, or we have tooth that feels loose that we suddenly realize that maybe we haven’t been paying quite as much attention to taking care of them as we should. Although there is no guarantee that you won’t experience a dental problem at some point during your life, experts agree that by taking positive and proactive steps to protect your teeth, you are much less likely to need extensive dental work.
To help you get the very best from your teeth and preserve them as long as possible, here are our top tips for proper dental care.
Brush your teeth properly
Although most of us make the effort to brush our teeth twice each day, it would be fair to say that the quality of our brushing can be somewhat lacklustre at times. Not brushing for the recommended two minutes each time, not reaching all the areas of our mouth or failing to use a fluoride toothpaste are all common errors when it comes to cleaning our teeth. Make sure to spend long enough and use the proper brushing technique to do a really great job of keeping your teeth and mouth as clean as possible.
Use the right equipment and replace regularly
When did you last change your toothbrush? Studies show that a large number of us have been using the same toothbrush far longer than is recommended. Opt for a small-headed, round brush as these are easiest to manoeuvre around in your mouth. It can be tempting to opt for firm bristles since they may appear the most robust. However, these can damage the enamel on your teeth so instead choose a soft bristled toothbrush. Keep your toothbrush clean by rinsing it each time you use it. You should ideal change your toothbrush every six months, or sooner if the bristles appear dirty or in bad condition.
Many people focus on cleaning their teeth and fail to remember that the health of their gums is just as important. Your gums hold your teeth in place and if they aren’t cared for, you could develop periodontal disease. This is a common condition caused when plaque spreads from the teeth onto gum tissue, causing irritation and infection. Left untreated, periodontal disease can cause jaw bone deterioration, gum tissue recession and widespread infection. Worse still, it has been linked to serious health problems such as diabetes, heart disease and stroke. Flossing helps to remove bacteria and food debris that gets stuck between your teeth and is one of the biggest contributors to the development of gum disease. Floss daily for the best results.
Watch what you eat and drink
Our mouths are full of bacteria, some good and some responsible for causing dental decay. When the latter comes into contact with sugars in the food and drink you consume, the bacteria turns the sugar into acid which eventually erode the teeth and cause decay to occur. For this reason, dentists strongly recommend that you limit your intake of sugary foods and drinks. However, it isn’t just sugars that we need to worry about. Highly acidic drinks like sodas, cordials and fruit juice can also soften tooth material and dissolve the minerals in our tooth enamel, causing cavities.
Don’t use your teeth as tools
Our sharp teeth can be a very convenient tool when we don’t have certain equipment to hand, and many of us use them to open packaging, cut tape, crack nuts or even remove bottle tops. However, our teeth aren’t intended for this purpose and using them in this way can cause severe damage. Chips and breaks are often caused by using our teeth inappropriately.
Visit your dentist regularly
Your dentist has the training and experience to be able to spot dental problems early, before they become painful and expensive to treat. You should ensure that you attend your regularly scheduled check-ups as these provide your professional with an ideal opportunity to monitor your dental health. If you suspect a problem in the meantime, don’t delay in getting it checked out by your dentist.
If you would like more advice on the best way to look after your teeth, our dedicated and experienced dental team are on hand to help. Please contact our Omaha, NE office today to speak to us or to arrange an appointment.