Maintaining healthy teeth has many advantages from improved digestion to heart disease prevention. The startling fact is that, in America, half the children have cavities before they start school. Maintaining a healthy mouth and teeth is not very difficult and merely requires a little discipline.
Brush and Floss Frequently
You should thoroughly brush your teeth at least twice a day, and floss at least once a day. It is important to perform these daily functions correctly, or they be less than efficient in protecting your teeth. Change your toothbrush at least every 2 to 3 months. Inevitably there will be bacteria build-up on your brush so changing it regularly will eliminate that possible source of infection.
It is imperative to inculcate good dental habits from a very early age. The baby teeth will fall out, but it’s the habit that you are trying to reinforce that’s important. If your kids develop problems as their permanent teeth come out, sort the problem out immediately. To straighten teeth when your kid is 10 is a lot easier than trying to do it at 30. Good habits cemented at a young age will carry on right through life.
Tobacco and Food
Smoking carries many severe health risks and aesthetic impacts, not least of which is discolouration of your teeth, bad breath and possible gum disease. It’s just not worth starting. If you do smoke, try and cut down.
Your diet also plays a very important part in healthy teeth. Foods that are high in sugar ,and acidic beverages provide the perfect food for the bacteria in your mouth. Funnily enough, it is not the amount of sugar that does the most damage; it the frequency of the sugar intake. Irrespective of how much sugar you take at one sitting, the bacteria only have about 30 minutes of feeding before the sugars are neutralised, and washed to your stomach by saliva.
When you have eaten, and you can’t brush or floss, try and chew sugarless gum, preferably containing xylitol. Xylitol is a sugar alcohol that fools the bacteria into thinking they can use it, but bacteria can’t break xylitol down and they starve.
It’s critical to visit your dentist on a regular basis, or, heaven forbid, when you feel that something is not quite right. A regular visit to a dentist once a year, at the very least, is very important. The dentist will be able to spot any potential problems or incorrect habits long before you will feel their effects. Regular visits to a dental hygienist for a deep clean would also be a very good idea. If anything is amiss below the gum line your hygienist will spot it.
An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Forming good habits from an early age will create an excellent foundation for later life. You will experience oral problems sometime during your life, the secret is to minimise the frequency and damage as much as possible. Regular visits to your dentist are probably the most effective way of keeping your teeth healthy.