Oral hygiene keeps your gums and teeth healthy. It makes speaking, eating, and laughing easy for you. Unfortunately, the mouth is susceptible to attacks by various bacteria. Good care practices should keep the bacteria at bay and help you maintain a healthy mouth.
Brush Your Teeth Regularly and Gently
Brushing your teeth two times a day is among the essential practices to keep your mouth clean. It also removes plaque and bacteria. But, brushing is only useful if done right.
Have some fluoride toothpaste and a soft-bristle brush. Gently brush your teeth in small circular motions. For each tooth, take time to brush the front, the back, and the top. Brush your tongue lightly, and along the gumline. A tongue scraper should wipe off the debris from your tongue. Avoid moving your toothbrush back and forth. Using dental floss, a water flosser, or a pre-threaded flosser, now clean between your teeth. Flossing removes food remains and plaque that the toothbrush cannot reach. Rinse your mouth when done.
If you have a condition like arthritis that limits your hand motion, use an electric toothbrush, or one that uses batteries. If you have difficulty gripping the toothbrush’s small handle, buy one with a large handle. If you cannot fold your fist, stick the toothbrush to your hand with an elastic band.
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) identifies smoking as a risk factor for periodontal disease. The American Dental Association (ADA) also warns that smoking slows healing after a dental procedure. Smoking brings down your immunity, making it hard for the body to fight bacteria and other infections. Smoking also changes your mouth’s appearance by yellowing your tongue and teeth. It causes foul mouth odor.
Limit the Starches and Sugary Foods
Sugary foods like candy and most desserts cause cavities. Most processed foods also have high sugar content. The World Health Organization recommends that sugar only takes up 10 percent or lower of your daily caloric intake. Dentists also warn that some starchy foods like bread, pasta, chips, and crackers cause food decay. These foods break into simple sugars, then go on to linger in your mouth. Acid-producing bacteria feed on these sugars, and the acid erodes your teeth, causing decay. Rather than snack on starchy foods, opt for vegetables, fruits, and plain daily products without sugar.
Get a Mouthwash
A mouthwash is beneficial to your oral health. It contains an antibacterial element, chlorhexidine that reduces plaque and gingivitis. Some mouthwashes also contain some essential oils. However, mouthwash should not substitute flossing and brushing; it is only complementary.
More Water, Less Sugary Drinks
Most added sugars in the American diet come from sugar-sweetened beverages. Many people keep sipping juice, soda, and sugary drinks. The sugars cause cavities and expose you to lifestyle diseases like obesity and diabetes.
Practicing dental hygiene will keep your gums and teeth healthy. Regular dental checks ensure that you are on the right track. For a comprehensive dental exam, visit IronWood Dental Care in Queen Creek, Arizona. You can also call 480-712-8580 to book your appointment.