While most people understand the importance of proper dental hygiene, not everyone practices a healthy dental care routine. It’s advisable to take charge of your oral health as early as you can. Consistency is the key to success, so start with small steps and build positive, long-lasting habits. These five tips will help you create a practical and effective oral care routine:
1. Make Routine Dental Appointments
When you regularly schedule dental check-ups, your dentist can detect and prevent oral health issues before they become serious. Dental professionals recommend making at least two appointments per year.
Routine dental appointments generally include oral exams, cleanings, fluoride treatment, and sealants. These consultations also allow you to gain valuable tips for at-home dental care. Your dentist will evaluate your teeth, gums, and jaws and make recommendations for improving your oral health at home.
2. Establish a Thorough Home Care Regimen
Taking proper care of your teeth and gums goes beyond using the right toothbrush and toothpaste. It is also important use the right brushing technique, taking at least two minutes to clean your teeth and avoiding brushing too roughly. Cleaning your tongue is also an integral part of maintaining dental hygiene and overall health. A scraper helps you get rid of bacteria on this vital organ.
Flossing is another crucial step in your oral health routine. By flossing daily, you get rid of food particles stuck between your teeth and reduce the buildup of bacteria that can cause tooth decay. Other ways to care for your oral health at home include rinsing with mouthwash, chewing sugar-free gum, and drinking enough water.
3. Eat a Healthy Diet
The foods you eat play a vital role in your overall health and wellness, including the health of your teeth, gums, and jaws. For example, dental experts recommend incorporating crunchy vegetables and fruits into your diet. These foods contain healthy fiber, which helps activate your jaw muscles.
Certain foods are more likely to accelerate tooth decay, including foods that are acidic, sticky, sugary, or high in carbohydrates. Sugary foods also contain starches, which offer a breeding ground for harmful bacteria. While it isn’t necessary to completely eliminate these foods from your diet, you should enjoy them in moderation. Brushing or flossing your teeth after a meal can also help curb the development of dental decay.
4. Invest in High-Quality Dental Products
With countless dental solutions on the market, picking the right one can be confusing. It is important to be open with your dentist about your oral health care questions, goals, and concerns. They can recommend products and services that address your unique dental needs and offer the most value for your money.
Your dentist’s advice can be a useful starting point for discovering the brands and products that work best for you. When evaluating new oral health products, ensure you choose brands that have received the Seal of Acceptance from the American Dental Association (ADA).
5. Avoid Harmful Habits
Various habits can adversely affect your oral health. They include clenching and grinding your teeth, which can cause muscle pain, headaches, jaw trauma, and chipped teeth. This unconscious clenching or grinding is known as bruxism and can be diagnosed and treated by your dentist.
Smoking is one of the most harmful habits that can impact your oral health. In addition to causing stained teeth and weakened gums, smoking also increases the likelihood of developing oral, throat, and lung cancer.
Although your teeth are durable, you should avoid habits that can cause unnecessary wear on your enamel. For example, dental experts advise against biting your nails or using your teeth as a bottle opener. Also, avoid harmful dental hygiene practices that can harm your gum line, such as brushing your teeth too aggressively.