With all the health advice available today, it’s hard to know what’s actually important to your oral health. Dr. Jason Petkevis and his team at Dental Distinction in Chester Springs, PA want you to know the top 10 dental care tips so you can keep your mouth and body healthy for years to come.
1. Use toothpaste with fluoride
Fluoride helps strengthen the teeth and may help reverse early signs of tooth decay. It’s an important ingredient in toothpaste to strengthen weakened spots in enamel and prevent cavities.
2. Brush your teeth every day
There’s a reason you hear this advice all the time. Brushing your teeth is the single most important way to prevent tooth decay. Brushing removes leftover food particles and oral bacteria, which when left on the teeth causes cavities, tooth decay, and gum disease.
3. See your dentist twice a year
Even the best oral hygiene regimen still needs to include seeing your dentist regularly. Your dentist can spot early signs of tooth decay or gum disease, helping you avoid painful or complicated dental procedures. Annual X-rays will examine the jaw to ensure teeth are firmly in place.
4. Flossing is as important as brushing
We know if you haven’t been flossing! Flossing is important because it removes bacteria and plaque from between teeth that your toothbrush can’t reach. Tooth decay often starts between teeth because these places are cleaned less often.
5. Limit sugar intake, including sugary drinks
Sugar contributes to tooth decay because it feeds the bacteria that live in our mouths. Bacteria feed off of the leftover food particles on the teeth, and if the food contains a high sugar content, bacteria can multiply even faster. Reducing the amount of sugar in your diet will help keep oral bacteria at bay.
6. Maintain a healthy diet
Teeth need nutrients, too. A healthy diet filled with fresh vegetables and food that requires a lot of chewing is good for saliva production. More saliva means the mouth is naturally washed out more often, helping prevent plaque from forming.
7. Stay hydrated
Your body needs water to produce saliva, which naturally washes out the mouth and helps prevent tooth decay. This helps prevent excess plaque build-up.
8. Take care of your toothbrush
Your toothbrush doesn’t need any special cleaning, but make sure it dries after each use and there is no leftover toothpaste. Store it upright and exposed to air and your toothbrush will be good to go!
9. Don’t chew on hard items
This may go without saying, but try not to bite down on hard candies or even non-food items like pen caps or fingernails. This can damage teeth.
10. Don’t forget your tongue
Your tongue shouldn’t have a white or yellow appearance. When you brush your teeth, don’t forget to brush your tongue or use a tongue scraper to remove foul-smelling bacteria that can cause bad breath.
Our Dental Distinction team is here to help you maintain your oral health. Schedule an appointment today to keep your smile healthy!