Oral health is a vital facet of our overall well-being. Good oral hygiene practices can prevent tooth decay, gum disease, and other dental issues. However, despite knowing the importance of oral health, many people need help to care for their teeth and gums. It often leads to dental problems, significantly impacting our quality of life.
One of the main reasons people neglect their oral health is because they have bad habits that are hard to break. These habits can range from not brushing their teeth properly to consuming sugary drinks and snacks frequently. This article will discuss the practices you should change for better oral health.
Best practices you should Change for Better Oral Health
Brushing too Hard: Brushing your teeth hard can damage the enamel and cause gum recession, leading to sensitivity, cavities, and tooth loss. Therefore, using a soft-bristled brush and brushing gently in circular motions, focusing on each tooth’s surface and gum line, is essential. Remember to brush your tongue to remove the bacteria and freshen your breath. Aim to brush for two minutes twice daily, and replace your toothbrush every three months or when the bristles become frayed.
Not Brushing Long Enough: Another common mistake is not brushing their teeth long enough. Dentists recommend brushing your teeth for at least 2 minutes twice a day. To ensure that you are brushing for the recommended amount of time, set a timer or use an electric toothbrush with a timer.
Brushing Immediately After Eating: While it is essential to brush your teeth regularly, brushing immediately after eating acidic foods or drinks can damage your teeth. Acidic foods and drinks can weaken the enamel, and brushing too soon after consuming them can erode the enamel further. Attending at least 30 minutes after eating before brushing your teeth is preferred.
Ignoring Your Tongue: Your tongue is a breeding ground for bacteria, and ignoring it can lead to other oral health issues or bad breath. To keep your tongue clean, use a tongue scraper or brush your tongue gently with your toothbrush.
Not Flossing: Flossing is an essential part of oral hygiene, as it removes food particles and plaque from between the teeth and gums, where the toothbrush cannot reach. Failing to floss can lead to gum disease, tooth decay, and bad breath. Therefore, it is essential to floss once daily, gently moving the floss back and forth without snapping it into the gums, which could harm them. If you find traditional flossing challenging, consider using floss picks, water flossers, or interdental brushes.
Skipping Dental Appointments: Many people miss dental appointments due to fear, cost, or busy schedules. However, regular dental checkups and cleanings are crucial for detecting and treating dental problems early before they escalate into more significant issues. Your dentist can also advise on oral hygiene, diet, and lifestyle habits that can improve your oral health. Therefore, you should schedule dental appointments every six months or as your dentist advises.
Using Tobacco Products: Smoking or using tobacco products can lead to oral cancer, gum disease, tooth loss, and bad breath. Tobacco products also stain teeth, contribute to plaque buildup, and reduce saliva production, neutralizing acids and bacteria in the mouth. Therefore, quitting smoking or using tobacco products can significantly improve oral health and well-being. Talk to your healthcare provider or join a support group to help you stop.
Consuming Sugary and Acidic Foods and Drinks: It can lead to enamel erosion, tooth decay, and sensitivity. Sugary and starchy foods feed bacteria in the mouth, producing acids that erode the enamel, while acidic foods and drinks soften the enamel, making it more susceptible to erosion. Therefore, limiting your intake of sugary and acidic foods and beverages is essential, and choosing healthier alternatives such as water, milk, vegetables, fruits, nuts, and whole grains. If you consume sugary or acidic foods or drinks, rinse your mouth with water immediately afterward to help neutralize the acids and prevent damage.
Grinding or Clenching Teeth: This, also known as bruxism, can lead to tooth wear, sensitivity, and jaw pain. Bruxism is caused by stress, anxiety, and sleep disorders, and it can also be a side effect of certain medications or dental problems. Therefore, it is crucial to identify the underlying cause of bruxism and seek treatment from a dental professional. Your dentist may recommend a night guard or splint to protect your teeth from further damage.
Snacking Too Often: Snacking throughout the day can increase plaque and bacteria in your mouth, leading to tooth decay and gum disease. Limit your snacking and choose healthy snacks such as fruits, vegetables, and nuts.
It would be best to change these habits above for better oral health. Following these tips can maintain good oral hygiene and prevent dental issues. Remember to avoid sugary drinks, brush and floss regularly, and see your dentist regularly. You can enjoy a beautiful smile and better overall health by caring for your oral health. If you are facing a similar problem, consult our dentists at TruCare. Reach us for the best dentist in Roswell, GA, or neighboring areas such as Dunwoody, Alpharetta, Milton, Marietta, Sandy Springs, or Woodstock; contact us at (678) 321-7575 or book an appointment with us.