Did you know April is Oral Health Month in North America? With that in mind, the experts at Capital Dentistry want to share with you some tips to keep your oral health in tip-top shape. Preventive therapy is such an important aspect of overall oral health and will generally mean less dental work is needed in the long term. The good news is much of that prevention is in your control.
Any good dental team wants to see your appointment go smoothly and without any major issues. These small habit changes can help you achieve that, along with keeping that big smile on your face. We know many people have some lack of trust when heading to the dentist, so we want to arm you with the proper information to keep you feeling in control. These easy-to-follow tips will help make your next visit to the dentist more enjoyable.
Here are the top six truths from the experts at Capital Dentistry:
1. Chug that sugary drink
Want to slow down tooth decay? Stop slow-sipping sugary drinks. Aside from avoiding sugar-filled beverages all together, this is the next important thing to do. When sugary drinks are sipped slowly, it extends the time that your teeth are being exposed to sugar. Think of it as your teeth taking a long bath in sugar. This speeds up the process of tooth decay if you are consuming sugary drinks on a regular basis. And we’re not just talking soft drinks here, but also referring to warm beverages like coffee and tea where sugar is added. So next time you reach for that double-double, just remember to drink it faster than usual and brush your teeth after.
2. Your tongue is a bacteria sponge
Do not neglect your tongue when brushing your teeth. Your tongue requires just as much care and attention as your teeth. While we know the most common sign of bacteria on the tongue is bad breath, most people don’t realize that a dirty tongue is a gateway to other health issues. So do yourself a favour and focus on this easy preventive measure.
3. Prevention is key to less dental work
Want to reduce the need for dental work? Maintain your regular checkups. Regular checkups allow your dental team to spot issues early on. Catching issues early means less work is needed to fix emergencies or treat severe pain. Another important step is to do your X-rays, as they also allow dentists to spot problems early. X-rays are certainly not needed every checkup — or even every year — but they do help spot signs of problems. At the end of the day, the time it takes to have an X-ray taken is much less than the time needed to treat an emergency.
4. Healthy gums are like a solid house foundation
We don’t expect flowers to grow in infested soil do we? So why would our teeth stay strong and beautiful if the gums are infected? Flossing your teeth is incredibly important and creates a healthy environment for your teeth. Flossing isn’t for you? Try a water flosser, a painless way to get the plaque out from between your teeth. Just flossing once a day can make such a big difference.
5. Push past the blood
Are you seeing some blood when you floss? While it’s not the best of experiences, bleeding while flossing usually means your gums really need it. So keep going. The more you get the plaque and bacteria out of there, the more your gums will thank you. Inflammation will go down and soon your gums will no longer bleed while you floss. Stay consistent and you will see results.
6. Brushing twice a day isn’t just a tag line
Yeah, yeah, you’ve heard it countless times from your dentist — brush twice a day. You might think it’s all about getting the food out. While that is a great reason, it’s not the only one. We brush our teeth in the morning to neutralize the acids built up overnight. We brush our teeth in the evening because saliva rates drop, making it harder for your mouth to naturally rid itself of food or debris.