In February we focused a lot on how to take care of your teeth when we did our school visits to celebrate Children’s Dental Health Awareness Month. The truth is, being able to maintain our smile and care for our teeth at home is just as important for adults as it is for kids. And, it’s not too difficult to do!
- Be sure your home care is off to a good start! Brush your teeth for 2 minutes, 2 times a day, every day! Removing the build-up from the day is hugely important in keeping the enamel of your teeth strong and your teeth healthy. In addition to brushing twice a day (morning and night), floss your teeth once a day. A good amount of your total tooth structure exists between your teeth and, without flossing, you will never be able to remove the daily debris. Use your favorite floss or water flosser once a day and you will be showing some love to your teeth!
- Be sure to see your dentist regularly for your regular check-ups! Just as you brush your teeth TWO times per day, you should visit your dentist TWO times per year. Many people like to wait until they are in pain or have a broken tooth. If you wait until you have pain, you usually have a large amount of decay that has caused it. It is best to see your dentist on a set schedule, so that if there is any decay, we catch it early, and while it is still small and easy to remove. You should also know that if you have any form of periodontal (gum) disease, your dentist may want you to come in more frequently until there is improvement in your gum health.
- Watch what you eat and drink! While genetics does play a role in how healthy our teeth are, it is more likely that what you eat and drink more greatly affects your teeth. For instance, drinks like soda, sports drinks, juice, coffee and tea are all acidic and they make your teeth more likely to get decay. It is hugely important that the main drink that you sip on all day is water, and that after you do have a coffee or other acidic drink, you rinse with water. Alternatively, snacks like cheese are the opposite of acidic and can make your mouth less susceptible to decay. So, adding cheese to your crackers could be benefit for your teeth. Here are some “go-to” snacks and some “sometimes” snacks that you should be aware of. Eat from the blue colume frequently and the other columns, well, just sometimes.
Remember- your mouth plays a big role in your overall health and taking care of your smile is a great step in taking care of YOU!