5 Steps to Oral Health

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    Give yourself something to smile about daily by treating your teeth to good oral health. By taking care of your mouth you can prevent oral diseases, tooth decay, infections, illness, and bad breath.

    Follow these five steps to achieve the best oral health.

    Brushing

    Brushing your teeth twice a day is a vital part of your daily dental care routine. Use a soft-bristled toothbrush, and replace your toothbrush every three to four months (or sooner if the bristles are worn). Use a toothpaste containing fluoride, and brush for two minutes both morning and night. Be sure to reach all corners and crevices of your teeth, as well as the surface of your tongue—neglecting to care for your tongue can lead to bad breath.

    It’s also important to replace your toothbrush every three months. When toothbrush bristles go soft and bend, they become less effective at cleaning the surface of your teeth. Brushing your teeth twice a day will be most effective if it’s done with a fresh toothbrush with strong bristles.

    Flossing

    You’ve probably heard your dentist tell you for years now that it’s important to floss once a day, but have you ever been told why it’s necessary? It may seem as though you’re able to get the job done with brushing, but there’s more to flossing than getting bits of food unlodged from in-between your teeth.

    Tartar buildup is one of the main causes of bad breath. By brushing your teeth, you’re able to remove the tartar on the surface of your teeth, but the only way to reach the tartar between your teeth is to floss. Flossing also eliminates oral bacteria that can lead to serious diseases if entered into your bloodstream.

    Mouthwash

    Mouthwash is a great way to freshen your mouth (and breath) and give it extra protection, but it’s important to note that it should not be used as a replacement to brushing or flossing. Look for a mouthwash that contains fluoride in it, and follow the directions on the label carefully. Fluoride protects your teeth from acid and helps prevent tooth decay.

    Dental Visits

    Many people wonder if it’s really necessary to visit the dentist every six months if you aren’t very prone to cavities. Yes, your dentist will check for tooth decay, but he/she does much more than just that during your visit. At your biannual check-up, you will also get an extensive cleaning that removes tartar only a professional is able to reach. Your dentist is also trained to recognize early signs of oral cancer that may not be noticeable by you.

    Healthy Diet

    Your diet has more to do with your oral health than you might realize. Sugary foods and drinks such as candy and soda contribute significantly to tooth decay, but there are also ways to strengthen and protect your teeth through the foods you eat. Apples, kale, and nuts are just a few of the many foods for good dental health. Your smile is one of the first things people notice about you. Give it the attention it needs by taking care of your mouth with good cleaning habits, regular dentist visits, and by eating the right foods. Not only will your smile look great, but you feel great while fighting off tooth decay, bad breath, infections, and illness.