Join us for part three of our preventive dentistry series: We uncover the dos and don’ts of dental care.
Over the last few months we have been discussing preventive dentistry, touching on the importance of a daily routine, and what you can expect during your next check-up. You can read our previous blogs here.
For part three of the series we will be wrapping up our discussion on preventive dentistry and giving you the low down on the 10 dos and don’ts when it comes to your dental health.
Part three –Preventive dentistry, and the 10 dos and don’ts when it comes to maintaining a healthy smile.
Oral health is often overlooked when it comes to your body’s overall health, mainly because the majority of us don’t see it as a priority. If we were suffering from a high fever, vomiting, or chest pains most of us would rush down to the emergency room; when it comes oral pain would you do the same? For most of us the answer would be no. Oral health is not an isolated part of the body, with issues such as nutrition, oral function and communication skills all affected by dental issues. This makes it even more important for us to keep on top of our oral health.
If you want to ensure you maintain good oral health and prevent any future issues caused by complicated dental problems, these are the dos and don’ts you need to abide by.
The Dos for good oral health
1. Brush at least twice daily
Correct oral hygiene involves regular brushing; we recommend twice daily. Brushing should not just be limited to your teeth either; brushing your entire mouth is just as important to maintain good oral health. The optimal time to brush is first thing in the morning and right before you go to bed in the evening. Brushing your teeth when you first get up is important to get saliva moving around your mouth, as well as remove any bacteria which has accumulated overnight. Cleaning your teeth before bed is vital to remove any food debris or bacteria which have accumulated over the course of the day.
2. Clean your whole mouth not just your teeth
Our teeth only make up a portion of the oral cavity. Your tongue, cheeks, gums and throat are all exposed to the same food debris and bacteria as your teeth, which means it’s important to brush all areas of your mouth as well. You can also rid your mouth of harmful bacteria with the use of an anti-bacterial mouthwash.
3. Floss in-between brushing
A fair amount of bacteria and food debris can become lodged in between our teeth, making it difficult for normal toothbrushes to reach. This makes flossing a vital addition to any dental routine. Dental floss ultimately removes this food and bacteria which becomes trapped between teeth, scraping it out and preventing bacteria growth and the build-up of plaque.
4. Pay attention and recognise the signs of oral health issues
The main cause of severe dental problems is often patients ignoring the early signs of a dental issue. In most cases treatments such as root canals and tooth extractions can be avoided with the correct early intervention. If you pay close attention to your oral health, have regular check-ups, and act at the first signs of a problem you can often avoid having dental complications later on.
5. Book regular check-ups
Keeping your dentist in the loop and having them aware of your dental health means that when it comes to detecting an issue they are able to act on it right away. During check-ups, your dentist will clean and scale your teeth, lowering the chances of infection and more complicated issues.
The Don’ts for good oral health
1. Don’t over indulge in sugary or sticky foods
When it comes to maintaining good oral health, sugar is your enemy. Sugars are the food supply of bacteria and allow them to thrive in the mouth. Over indulgence in sugary foods can lead to serious dental problems. Sticky foods such as toffees can also impact tooth decay, with the sticky substance trapping bacteria on the surface of your teeth allowing them to multiply.
2. Avoid eating large amounts of acidic foods
Acid weakens teeth by breaking down tooth enamel. High consumption of acidic foods and beverages can lead to teeth becoming sensitive and discoloured. To avoid this it is recommended that you always try to rinse your mouth out with water following consumption of these foods or drinks. It is also a good idea to avoid brushing until at least 30 minutes after; this allows tooth enamel to re-mineralise.
3. Don’t leave it too late to visit the dentist
Your oral health should never be overlooked, when it comes to making time for a dentist visit many of us put if off. Maintaining good oral health is vital to retaining a healthy body. You should be visiting your dentist at least once every six months to ensure your mouth is healthy and problem free.
4. Don’t wait for bleeding or unbearable pain to visit
Waiting for the appearance of severe dental issues is often too late, and can lead to more complicated issues. At the first sign of a dental issue you should get in contact with your dentist and book an appointment, issues such as isolated tooth pain, constant bleeding, or swelling of the gums can lead to complications if not treated early.
Smoking can cause tooth discolouration and affect the overall health of the gums increasing tooth decay and often leading to bad breath. Not to mention a range of other health issues it causes throughout the body.
Through abiding by these dos and don’ts you will hopefully be able to maintain a healthier smile. Remember that prevention is much better than a cure and maintaining good oral health is vital to maintaining a healthy body. If you would like to book in for a check-up or have a dental issue you need addressed please don’t hesitate to contact us.