Dental hygiene is not something that can be addressed only during your biannual dental cleanings. Maintaining a healthy smile is an everyday endeavor that takes dedication and intentional action.
While we can help alleviate problems such as cavities, cracks, and even misalignment, the majority of dental issues can be prevented altogether through proper dental hygiene at home. In between dental visits, there are several key steps you can – and should – take to ensure your teeth and gums are healthy and strong. Here are 4 key tips from Radiance Dental.
While the most obvious, this tip is also the most important. Brushing is the best single way to ensure the health of your smile. However, brushing the wrong way or with the improper frequency won’t improve your dental hygiene.
Make sure to brush twice daily (once in the morning and once before bed). Pay special attention to the gum line on both the inside and outside of your teeth. The hard-to-reach spaces can harbor plaque buildup which can lead to cavities, so ensure your brush can reach to the back corners of your mouth.
For best results, use your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle to your gum line, and replace your toothbrush every 2-3 months. Don’t forget to brush your tongue, which can harbor bacteria.
Flossing is just as vital as brushing. When you brush, you scrub away the food and plaque from the exposed surfaces of your teeth. However, the spaces in between your teeth are difficult to reach – this is often where cavities first form. Flossing at least once a day can help make your teeth stronger and reduce the need for fillings in the future.
When flossing, make sure to wiggle the floss in between your teeth, all the way down to the gum line. Next, move the floss to one side of the tooth gap and scrape the interior edge of the tooth several times. Repeat the process on the other side of the gap, then move to the next space. If you have braces, a retainer, or a permanent bar, use a floss threader to slip under them.
Dental hygiene isn’t all about cleaning – it involves your eating habits, too. Eating the wrong foods can put your teeth at risk for serious decay and cavities, while healthy foods will strengthen your body and your jaw.
Avoid foods high in sugar, as well as acidic foods and soda. These can wear away at your enamel, or the natural protective layer on your teeth. As enamel wears down, your teeth are at much higher risk for decay.
Healthy and crunchy vegetables are a great way to both strengthen your jaw muscles and provide your teeth with the vitamins and minerals they need. Options such as kale, broccoli, carrots, and celery are great choices.
You may have heard that staying hydrated is important for your digestive system and your energy levels. It turns out that water is great for your teeth as well! When you drink water, residue from previously consumed food and beverages washes away, serving as a brisk cleanse for your teeth and preventing buildup. Especially if you drink coffee or beverages with added colors, water is essential to refreshing your teeth to their pearly natural state.
Prioritize Your Oral Health with Radiance Dental
To make sure your dental hygiene is in top condition, scheduling a minimum of two cleanings a year with a dental provider is essential. At Radiance Dental, we take pride in offering comfortable, safe, and effective treatments for the entire family. From cleanings, to fillings, crowns, bridges, root canals, Invisalign, and other cosmetic treatments, we can help you craft the smile you’ve always wanted. Contact us today to take a meaningful step towards improved oral health.