I would venture a guess that the average person at their dental appointment is lying about how often they floss. They’re probably lying about how many times a day they brush, too. It’s not that this is a particularly bad lie; but forgetting to floss or refusing to brush more than every other day – that can be pretty bad in the long run. Lax dental care can lead to cavities, which can lead to tooth decay, which can force you to seek out your dentist for procedures like root canals. Yikes.
So, your friendly Birmingham dentist would like you to know how to care for your teeth, so that you can prevent things like root canals. Even your friendly dentist in Birmingham AL can agree that you should avoid that particular dentist’s visit, because even they don’t want to do that to you.
So how do you maintain healthy mouth and gums? Just make these simple habits part of your daily routine.
Brush Twice a Day
Brushing is the most obvious habit you can develop to care for your teeth. To brush properly, angle the bristles of your toothbrush against your gums and move the brush in wide downward-sweeping circles.
It’s advisable to brush once in the morning and once before going to bed.
It’s also good advice to brush your tongue, as bacteria can linger there and continue to cause problems in spite of clean teeth.
Floss Every Day
Take about a foot of dental floss, wrap each end around two fingers, and insert the floss between each of your teeth by turns. Flossing removes the plaque between your teeth that often cannot be removed simply by brushing.
Use a Mouthwash, or Gargle with Hydrogen Peroxide
An antibacterial mouthwash can help to kill any lingering bacteria that may be living in the mouth. This is a good way to prevent germs that cause particularly halitosis – a good mouthwash can help freshen the breath.
Ahh, yes – now we are going from purely habits that you teach your three-year-old up to habits that are difficult to develop even as an adult.
But it’s true that one of the best ways to prevent dental problems is to maintain healthy eating habits. Sugar in particular is a huge culprit when it comes to causing tooth decay; but it’s not just candy and cookies. Excessive simple carbohydrates – like white bread or white potatoes – can also contribute to cavities.
However, there are also healthy foods which help to fight tooth decay. Fruits and veggies – namely, fruits that are not extremely acidic like bananas and apples – provide vitamins and minerals that naturally build up your body’s defenses against all disease. Fibrous foods – figs, raisins, beans, and brussels sprouts – also stimulate saliva. Saliva promotes good digestion and mineral defenses in the mouth, which ultimately creates healthier teeth.
Whole grains act the same way, as they also contain fiber. Whole grains also contain vitamin B, iron, and magnesium, all of which promote healthy gums – thereby preventing gingivitis.
Take Your Vitamins
If you can’t get enough of these necessary vitamins – iron, vitamin B, and magnesium – certainly take supplements to help your body (and your teeth) receive these important nutrients. Calcium in particular is incredibly important to the health of teeth and the prevention of tooth decay. Plenty of foods also contain calcium, so be sure to eat a good portion of fish, milk, spinach, and Brazil nuts as well.
Talk with Your Dentist
There are many cities and counties across the country that add fluoride to their water sources. Fluoride is also added to many toothpastes and mouthwashes. However, if you feel your other efforts to promote healthy teeth and prevent decay are not enough, you can discuss extra fluoride treatments with your dentist. He may also be able to suggest particular toothpastes or mouth rinses that have a more hefty dose of fluoride. If you have noticed a sensitivity in your gums or teeth, and yet can find no particular reason for this, again – your dentist can likely recommend a remedy for this.
Take care of your teeth, and your teeth will take care of you! Don’t forget that even simple habits like eating healthy can prevent cavities, gingivitis, and other problems.