Best Practices For A Healthy Smile

Posted by Louis E. Paulerio, D.D.S. on Oct 12 2022, 03:13 AM

Having good oral hygiene is important not only for your teeth but for your overall health as well. Listed below are a few best practices that you can follow to keep your teeth clean and healthy.

  • Brushing your teeth regularly

Brushing your teeth at least twice per day, for at least two minutes each time is the cornerstone of any great oral hygiene routine. But your brushing technique also plays a big role in keeping your mouth healthy. When you know the proper toothbrushing techniques, you can make sure you’re not just removing surface debris and reducing bacteria growth but also cleaning your gums and teeth down to the roots.

You should spend at least a minute on each quadrant of your mouth when brushing. Use a soft-bristled brush with tapered bristles and a small head. Hold it at a 45-degree angle against your gum line to remove plaque and debris. Then, use small circular motions to clean each tooth individually. Repeat the process for each quadrant of the mouth before rinsing with water or mouthwash.

Use fluoride toothpaste while brushing. Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral that can improve your overall dental health by strengthening the enamel on your teeth and preventing tooth decay. If you suffer from sensitivity or gum recession, opt for a low-abrasion formula that won’t irritate sensitive gums.

You should also replace your toothbrush every three to four months or sooner if the bristles become worn out. This will keep your teeth and mouth healthier by removing harmful bacteria from the bristles. It’s also recommended that you change your toothbrush after you recover from an illness to prevent reinfection. Children should replace their toothbrushes more frequently than adults, particularly after they finish the teething process.

  • Flossing daily

The American Dental Association recommends that you floss your teeth every day. Flossing removes food particles from between the teeth and under the gum line where toothbrushes won’t reach. This helps to maintain a healthy environment in the mouth to prevent decay from developing. Regular flossing removes food particles and bacteria from between the teeth, which in turn prevents tooth damage and gum disease. Although it’s important to remove plaque from the teeth, it’s equally important not to damage the gums by using excessive pressure or vigorous scrubbing when flossing.

  • Avoiding tobacco products

Tobacco products, such as cigarettes and chewing tobacco, are highly addictive. Even long after a smoker quits the habit, his or her body still craves nicotine, which causes pH levels in the mouth to become acidic. This acid wears down the teeth’s protective enamel layer, making smokers more susceptible to tooth decay than nonsmokers. Additionally, using tobacco products may stain the teeth yellow or brown over time. Quitting smoking is the best way to prevent oral health problems caused by tobacco use. If this advice doesn’t convince you to quit smoking, consider that smoking is a risk factor for oral cancer and other serious health conditions.

  • Avoid sugary drinks

Gum disease is linked to sugary drinks and sodas and should be limited as much as possible. However, we understand that it can be hard for people to completely give up their sweet indulgences. Rather than giving up sugar altogether, we recommend limiting your intake to items that are naturally sugar-free, like fresh berries or unsweetened tea. If you are uncertain about what is safe to eat, ask your oral healthcare provider for recommendations during your next visit.

To know more about treatments offered by our dentist, call us at (619) 223-3811 and schedule an appointment to visit the dental practice. 

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