To maintain healthy teeth and gums, it is important to follow good oral hygiene and also make suitable changes to your lifestyle. It is also important to regularly visit your dentist. As with any other disease, oral problems can be treated easily if they are detected in the early stages.
Here are 10 tips for healthy teeth and gums.
- Brush properly. The proper brushing technique is to place the toothbrush at a 45° angle to the gums and then gently move the brush back-and-forth in short strokes. Forceful and fast movements should be avoided as they can cause injury to the teeth or gums. You should brush your teeth for 2 to 3 minutes.
- Use fluoridated toothpaste. Fluoridated toothpaste can prevent dental problems and help in maintaining healthy teeth and gums. Fluoride makes the enamel of the teeth stronger and prevents tooth decay.
- Brush twice every day. Brushing your teeth at least twice every day is probably the most effective way to prevent dental problems. Brushing immediately after meals is particularly effective. It is also advisable to brush immediately after eating sugary foods. For best results, you should choose a toothbrush with a smaller sized head. The smaller head makes it easier to reach and clean the back sides of the teeth. It is also a good idea to avoid toothbrushes with harder bristles as they can cause injury to the gums.
- Floss your teeth regularly. Brushing cannot remove all the food particles and microbes trapped in the gaps of the teeth. This is where flossing helps. Flossing is effective in dislodging food particles and microbes that are trapped in inaccessible regions. Using a slow and gentle sawing motion provides the best results.
- Avoid foods rich in sugars. Eating sugary foods can increase the risk of tooth decay. The bacteria of the mouth feed on the sugars and convert them into acids. These acids destroy the surface of the teeth and lead to dental problems.
- Avoid soft drinks and fruit juices which contain acids. Acids present in soft drinks and fruit juices can dissolve the minerals present in the teeth leading to cavities or caries. Therefore it is best to avoid soft drinks and fruit juices containing acidic content.
- Protect your teeth from injury. Always wear a full helmet while driving your motorcycle. Motorcycle accidents account for a significant number of dental injuries. Similarly, always wear a protective mouth-guard or helmet while playing sports.
- Never use your teeth for anything other than chewing food. Never use your teeth for opening bottle caps, tearing packaging or breaking hard items such as nuts. These may result in chipping or breaking of your teeth.
- Try to save knocked out teeth. If you have sustained an accident resulting in knocked out teeth, it is best to try to save them and seek dental advice immediately.
- Vist your dentist regularly for checkups. It is advisable to visit your dentist at least once in every six months. If you experience any dental problems such as toothache or bleeding gums, you should visit your dentist as soon as possible for necessary treatment.