WE’VE ALL HEARD that if we want healthy teeth, we should brush twice a day, floss once a day, and schedule regular dental cleaning appointments twice a year. Definitely keep doing those things, but if you want to step up your oral health game, here are a few easy ways to do that.
1. Replace Your Toothbrush Regularly And Go Electric
One of the simplest ways you can improve your dental health and hygiene is to replace your toothbrush on a regular basis. Vigorous brushing will make the bristles fray and reduce the brush’s cleaning ability, but that’s not the only reason toothbrushes should be replaced often.
A lot of the bacteria we brush off our teeth stays on the bristles of our toothbrushes. Proper storage–meaning storing the toothbrush upright and letting it dry out between uses–can keep a toothbrush from getting smelly and nasty too fast, but it’s still important to replace your toothbrush at least every 3-4 months.
Using an electric toothbrush will give you an amazing experience! That sounds crazy but it really is true most people who get sonic care or a Braun Oral-B can’t say enough good things about it. It is true that we can brush as well with a manual toothbrush but studies show we do a better job with an electric brush.
2. Use A Tongue-Scraper
Brushing your teeth twice daily is a no-brainer, but don’t forget your tongue! The same bacteria and gunk that flourishes on teeth can hide on your tongue too. Using a tongue scraper or just running your toothbrush over your tongue will leave your mouth feeling much fresher than if you only focus on your teeth and gums. We love tongue scrapers you can get them here at McOmie Family Dentistry or you can easily find them online with a simple google search. This is one product every bathroom should have. Say goodbye to bad breath by scraping dead skin cells and things that cause bad breath away.
3. Don’t Brush Too Hard
Sometimes it seems like we need to really work at those teeth when we brush, to get absolutely all of the food particles and plaque out. However, if we brush too hard, we risk scraping away at the tooth enamel, which is your teeth’ first line of defense against decay. Brush gently or use a toothbrush with soft bristles to avoid damaging your teeth. Not to repeat ourselves too much here but an electric toothbrush makes it hard to brush too hard! The brush will turn off if you apply too much pressure. The gums you save could be your own. Now go get an electric toothbrush.
4. Use A Mouth Rinse
There are many to choose from and they all have good points, find one that is right for you. Whether it is fighting cavities, fresh breath, or gum problems there is a mouth rinse that can help. Here at McOmie Family Dentistry, we have different mouth rinses that we dispense to our patients to help with different things. If you have had some cavities maybe adding a fluoride rinse such as ACT will help. Fresh breath adds Listerine to your brushing and flossing protocol. These alone aren’t enough but they are often a healthy thing to add to your brushing and flossing routine.
5. Eat Teeth-Friendly Foods
Many foods are bad for your teeth. Sugar and carbs feed the harmful bacteria living in your mouth and acidic drinks erode tooth enamel. Avoiding some of these foods will help, but there are also plenty of foods you can eat that are actually good for your teeth. Check out our recent post on healthy snacking for your teeth.
Adding more cheese, yogurt, leafy greens, apples, carrots, celery, and almonds to your diet will make your teeth happy, whether by scrubbing them as you eat, fighting bad bacteria, treating gum disease, neutralizing your mouth’s pH, or remineralizing your enamel.
We’d Love To See How Your Teeth Are Doing!
If it’s been a while since your last visit to Dr. McOmie, we’d love to see how your teeth are doing, and we’ll be excited to see how adopting these simple habits will affect your oral health by the time we see you again!