A healthy smile is the most beautiful smile there is! Food will taste better. Conversation will flow effortlessly. And, overall, daily life will be all the more sweeter. So how can you make sure your smile is in the best shape? Try these top 10 tips from us and let’s keep that grin going from ear to ear, 365 days a year.
Most dentists recommend that you brush your teeth twice a day. Brushing removes leftover particles in the mouth that act as food for plaque—an acid-producing, transparent layer of bacteria that coats the teeth and damages the enamel. When you brush twice a day, you have a better chance of removing plaque before it hardens into tartar.
Before you put your paste on your toothbrush, make sure it’s fluoridated. It’s an important additive in any good toothpaste because fluoride makes teeth more resistant to acid and plaque buildup. With a fluoridated toothpaste, you can decrease the likelihood of tooth decay and reduce the need for fillings.
It’s not enough that you brush twice a day using fluoride toothpaste, you also need to have a good quality toothbrush. Go for a soft-bristled brush with a small head and a comfortable handle to make it easier to clean all the nooks and crannies of your mouth. If you have some limitations in your hand movements due to arthritis or another condition, then you should consider using an electric toothbrush instead.
One limitation of toothbrushing: it doesn’t clean in between teeth or below the gumline. For that you’ll need to floss. Practice the c-shape flossing method to effectively clean the hard-to-brush areas of your mouth. If alternative interdental cleaning accessories like oral irrigators and flossing picks help you to floss more regularly and thoroughly, they may be well worth the investment to help you prevent cavities.
For people who think they can get by without cleaning their tongue, there’s some bad news. The reason the ADA recommends we brush our tongue is because the consequences of not cleaning it can be somewhat embarrassing, if not damaging to your health. The tongue acts as a sponge when it comes to bacteria.
Simply rinsing your mouth won’t get rid of the bacteria and an overgrowth of them can cause bad breath. Using your toothbrush or a tongue scraper to clean your tongue may help reduce bad breath and lessen your chance of developing gum disease or cavities.
Staying hydrated goes a long way towards supporting your oral health. Not only does water flush out any leftover particles in the mouth, it also helps your mouth to maintain a healthy saliva flow. Try to drink at least one glass of water after every meal. Your smile will be all the better for it.
Having frequent cravings for sugary foods isn’t bad. Constantly giving in to your sweet tooth is what wreaks havoc on your smile. The bacteria in your mouth feed on sugar to produce an acid that starts the process of tooth decay. By simply cutting back on your sugar intake, you can reduce the risk of developing cavities and protect the health of your smile.
A healthy diet is important for your teeth in more ways than you know. Crunchy and chewy fruits and vegetables encourage the production of saliva—the mouth’s natural cleaning agent. The vitamin C in oranges and tomatoes can help neutralize plaque bacteria that clings to the surface of your teeth, waiting to create a cavity. Not to mention the enamel protection and improvement in bone density one can get from eggs and other protein—it’s pretty clear that healthy foods can provide the nourishment you need for a healthy smile.
It may sound a little obvious, but we’ll say it anyway: don’t chew on hard items. If you don’t want to damage your healthy smile leave those ice cubes at the bottom of your glass, always buy your olives pitted, and when consuming a hard candy allow it to naturally dissolve in your mouth instead of biting down. These tips will help you avoid unexpected trips to the dentist because of chips, cracks, or breaks in your enamel.
Your dentist is an important asset in your efforts to maintain a beautiful, healthy smile. Through regular teeth cleanings and comprehensive oral evaluations, your dental health professional can spot any oral problems at its earliest stages—when it’s easier (and less expensive) to treat. Schedule your appointment with us today and let’s keep your smile at it’s best… always.