Good oral hygiene isn’t just about keeping your smile bright. It’s also a big part of general health and wellness. Here are 10 simple tips to keeping your teeth strong and healthy:
1. Start early. Teeth can be wiped clean with a clean, damp cloth or a very soft brush. A child can begin brushing their own teeth at age two with adult supervision.
2. Seal them. Thin, protective coatings, called sealants, applied to the back teeth can prevent decay. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, sealants can greatly reduce the risk of cavities.
3. Use fluoride. Fluoride strengthens enamel, making teeth less likely to decay. Most Americans have fluoride in their drinking water, and most toothpastes and mouth rinses contain fluoride as well. Fluoride should be used sparingly in small children, as too much can cause white spots on their teeth.
4. Brush and floss twice a day. Remember to replace your toothbrush 3 to 4 times a year.
5. Rinse or chew gum after meals. Chewing sugar-free gum after a meal increases saliva flow, which naturally washes away bacteria and neutralizes acid.
6. Protect your teeth. If you are involved in sports or other recreational activities make sure to wear a mouth guard.
7. No tobacco. Cigarettes and smokeless tobacco stains your teeth and significantly increases your risk of gum disease and oral cancer.
8. Choose a healthy diet. A well-balanced diet of whole foods will provide your teeth with the nutrients to stay healthy and strong.
9. Avoid sugary or chewy foods foods. When the bacteria in your mouth breaks down simple sugars, it produces acids that can erode tooth enamel.
10. Come see us! You should have a dental check-up and cleaning twice a year.