Usually, people mistake oral health for a bright smile and straight teeth. However, oral health means more than having cavity-free teeth as one cannot forget about the gums. Almost half the American population is suffering from gum diseases, making it an epidemic in the country. Bad oral health brings about red gums, bad breath, tooth loss, among many other problems. When it comes to maintaining healthy gums, brushing one’s teeth is usually considered enough. However, despite its importance, it is not the only thing that can be done to guarantee a person’s oral health. Below is a list of factors, both dietary and lifestyle that, if observed, will help maintain your dental health.
- Brushing Regularly and Tenderly
Brushing one’s teeth at least twice a day is the most common way of ensuring plaque and bacteria are removed. Nonetheless, brushing is only useful if the right techniques are used. For example, brushing should be done in small circular motions ensuring that they clean all the angles of every tooth. The entire brushing process takes approximately 2-3 minutes, and one should avoid sawing motions.
Additionally, one should make sure that they avoid brushing aggressively as well as using a hard-bristled toothbrush as it may damage the enamel or gums. Apart from damaged enamel, aggressive brushing can also cause gum erosion and sensitive gums. As such, it is advisable to use a soft-bristled toothbrush as well as replacing a toothbrush every three months.
- Flossing Regularly
Removing plaque and bacteria is of utmost importance as they are the leading cause of bad oral health. Despite brushing being effective, some plaque and bacteria are beyond a toothbrush reach, necessitating one to floss to remove such. It also helps one avoid bad breath by removing any foreign material between the teeth.
Despite the continued lack of evidence supporting the benefits of flossing, it has remained one of the few methods that the American Dental Association (ADA) recommends. In most cases, dentists recommend gentle push of the floss to the gumline followed by up and down motions. Additionally, one should avoid snapping their floss as it may cause pain without necessarily removing the plaque.
- Quit Smoking
The effects of smoking on one’s heart and lungs are well known to most people. However, not much has been said about how smoking affects one’s gums. According to a study, smoking lowers a person’s immune functions by four times, thus increasing smokers’ chances of contracting gum diseases compared to non-smokers.
Additionally, smoking makes it hard for a person’s gums to heal after they are damaged. To maintain good dental health, it is advisable to quit smoking as well as the use of any tobacco products.
- Getting Dental Cleanings
According to experts, one should visit their dentist at least twice a year. It is during these visits that a dentist can spot and remove hardened tartar as well as plaque. Also, the checkups help the dentists check for cavities, among other dental problems.
According to a recent study, people between 6-24 years should visit a dentist twice a year without fail. However, for adults taking proper care of their teeth, they can do with one visit in a year. To ensure one maintains good oral health, one should follow their dentist’s advice as the visits may vary depending on various factors. Nevertheless, one should make a point of visiting a dentist if any form of change occurs.
- Eat the Right Food
The first way of maintaining good oral health is by checking what a person eats. When food is taken mixes with the bacteria present in once mouth, they vastly contribute to oral caries. As such, one should try to consume foods that are rich in calcium, such as milk. This is because calcium is vital when it comes to baby and adult teething process. Also, one should eat apples and most other crunchy fruits as they help in massaging the gums.
On the other hand, one should avoid using consuming starchy foods as they get stuck in the teeth, and the particles turn into sugar. In case one consumes them, they should make a point of brushing or flossing the teeth.
- Massage Your Gums
Not many people remember to massage their gums at the end of the day. Massaging one’s gums helps keep blood circulation moving, remove any plaque trapped between the teeth, and pinpointing any small problems in the mouth. Also, it helps ease sore areas through dislodging anything stuck between the teeth. Massaging can be done by using one’s fingers or toothbrushes designed for massaging gums.
- Rinse after Brushing or Flossing
Cleaning one’s mouth is a process that should be taken with the weight that it deserves as the mouth is the section of the body that carries the most bacteria. As such, one should regularly rinse their mouths using mouthwash to prevent any form of bacterial accumulation. Mouthwash is readily available over the counter, and apart from reducing bacteria accumulation, it also helps minimize tartar development. Usually, it is almost impossible for some people to use mouthwash, given its taste. If you are one of them, you can use salt and water to create your mouth rinse solution.
- Using the Right Toothpaste
Given the numerous brands that are available in-store currently, choosing the right toothpaste can be confusing for many. However, one must make sure they purchase toothpaste that is recommended by the relevant authorities such as ADA, and it must contain fluoride. Fluoride ensures that the user gets the best result after brushing.
- Avoid Swimming Every Day
Swimming has a lot of benefits to the body, and it is among the best cardiovascular exercises a person can take up. However, one should avoid swimming every day as it exposes them to chlorine, which damages the tooth enamel.
Practicing appropriate dental care helps a person avoid gum diseases, which may lead to tooth loss, among other dental problems. The points mentioned above should be taken critically as they help reduce any chance of dental problems. Bad breath and loss of teeth can lead to some people losing self-confidence, all incurring extra costs in the long-run. Good dental health requires one to utilize various techniques while using the right products.