When you know the factors that contribute to a healthy smile, you are prepared to enjoy a lifetime of good oral health. Daily habits, professional care, and lifestyle choices all make a big difference in the long-term health of your smile. Whether you need a gentle reminder on are learning proper oral health tips for the first time, today is a great day to begin properly caring for your teeth.
Daily Brushing and Flossing to Maintain a Healthy Smile
Brushing teeth in the morning and evening is essential to maintain oral health. Using a toothbrush or electric device approved by the American Dental Association is best, since the bristles will gently clean without harming enamel or gums. Brushing teeth with fluoridated toothpaste for a full two minutes helps re-mineralize enamel and thoroughly cleans tooth surfaces.
Equally important to brushing is flossing. Dental floss can remove dangerous bacteria from the hard to reach crevices between teeth and along the gum line. This not only protects your teeth from cavities, but it prevents the development of gum disease. Make sure to use ample floss so that a new section of string is used for each tooth.
There are other helpful products to clean teeth, such as:
- Disposable and portable interdental toothbrushes to clean teeth between meals.
- Disinfectant mouth wash to freshen breath.
- Tongue-scrapers to remove bacteria from the tongue.
Healthy Diets and Avoidance of Tobacco for Optimal Oral Health
Diet also affects oral health, and the frequent consumption of sugary foods jeopardizes the health of your teeth. Bacteria feed on sugars and after consumption, release an acid that causes tooth decay. Bacteria also form harmful substances called plaque and tartar that stubbornly stick to teeth, potentially leading to serious forms of gum disease and tooth loss.
Rinsing the mouth after eating sugary foods can help clean the mouth if you do not have access to a toothbrush or floss. Fibrous foods like apples, celery, or carrots remove bacteria from teeth due to the friction caused while chewing. Also, dairy products like milk, cheese, and yogurt have anti-bacterial properties than benefit smiles.
Another culprit that causes poor oral health is tobacco. People who use tobacco products are twice as likely to develop gum disease. The reason is that tobacco decreases the oxygen levels in the bloodstream. This can dim the gums from a healthy pink to a grayish color. Gums lacking oxygen have few blood cells to fight infection, and are more likely to become diseased. Avoiding tobacco helps gums remain healthy and teeth strong.
Professional Dental Treatment to Ensure Healthy Teeth and Gums
Finally, even with a healthy lifestyle, bi-annual dental exams and cleanings are essential to optimal oral health. The professional tools of a dentist can detect early signs of tooth decay and gum disease, preventing them from escalating into serious threats to your oral health.
Visit Dr. Dacen DeLaPaz for Outstanding Preventive Dental Care
Give the office of Dental Images in Belton a call to learn more about keeping your smile healthy and to receive an exam and professional cleaning. Dr. Dacen DeLaPaz provides the preventive care necessary to maintain a healthy smile and avoid more invasive and costly treatments. Serving Harker Heights and the surrounding community, Dr. DeLaPaz and his caring staff look forward to hearing from you!