7 Habits for Healthy Teeth
At James A. Penney, III, DDS, PA Endodontics, we know how important it is for you to keep your natural teeth healthy. If your tooth is in serious trouble, we can help restore it to it’s original health. The best way to keep your teeth healthy is to develop healthy dental habits as soon as you can.
Healthy teeth require a lifetime of healthy habits. There is no better time to start taking better care of your teeth than now.
Here are a few tips:
1. Brush your teeth before you go to bed and first thing in the morning.
Experts recommend brushing twice a day and most of us follow a morning and nighttime brushing routine. This is a great brushing routine for keeping your teeth strong and healthy and here is why:
Brushing your teeth right before bed prevents plaque buildup overnight. Overnight your teeth are sitting still, you aren’t talking, eating or drinking. The plaque on your teeth has a chance to harden while it’s sitting still. In the morning you should brush your teeth before breakfast. This is because acidic and sugary foods weaken your enamel. If you need to brush your teeth after eating, rinse with water or wait at least 30 minutes.
Are you brushing your teeth correctly? A great brushing routine doesn’t substitute proper brushing techniques. If you are not sure if you are brushing your teeth correctly, here are a few tips:
- The best way to brush your teeth is gently in a circular motion.
- Brush for at least two minutes.
- Its best to hold the toothbrush at a 45 degree angle along the gum line.
2. Brush your tongue to get rid of bad breath.
If you have bad breath, the culprit is usually your tongue. Plaque and bacteria can build up on your tongue. This buildup doesn’t just cause bad breath, it can cause decay in your teeth. While you are brushing your teeth, remember to also brush your tongue.
3. Use the right kind of toothpaste.
Fluoride is the most important ingredient to look for in toothpaste. After that you have many choices for flavor and whitening and strengthening properties. Your dentist might have recommendations for you based on your dental history.
If your teeth are sensitive to temperature, consider using toothpaste specifically designed for sensitive teeth. Are you prone to cavities? Prioritize enamel strengthening properties when you are choosing your next tube of toothpaste.
4. Floss once a day.
It’s not necessary to floss every time you brush your teeth. You only need to floss once a day. Flossing doesn’t just remove plaque and food from between your teeth, where your toothbrush can’t reach, it stimulates the gums around your teeth. This keeps your gums healthy and prevents gingivitis.
5. Drink water throughout the day.
You know drinking water is great for your overall health, but did you know it’s also good for your teeth? Drink water after you drink soda or another sugary drink. This will help rinse the sugar off your teeth and prevent it from causing plaque to build up.
6. Chew sugar free gum.
Like drinking water, chewing sugar free gum is a great way to protect your teeth after eating acidic food or drinking a sugary drink. When you chew sugar free gum your mouth produces more saliva. Saliva helps rinse away bacteria and protects your teeth from excessive acid.
7. Have regular visits with your dentist.
Last but not least, see your dentist every six months. Seeing a dentist is the most important thing you can do to stop tooth decay and prevent serious dental problems.