Your smile is one of the first things that people notice about you, so it’s no surprise that most people want to keep their teeth white and gleaming. But, it’s not just the appearance of your teeth that makes looking after them properly so important. Failing to practice good dental hygiene can lead to a wide range of health problems, from cavities and decay to more serious issues such as periodontal disease or even oral cancer.
The good news is that there are several simple, yet highly effective things that you can do on a regular basis to ensure that your teeth are kept in the best condition and looking shinier and whiter than ever. Along with regular visits to your cosmetic dentist, keeping on top of your dental hygiene routine and avoiding bad habits that can be damaging to your teeth will help you achieve and maintain the results that you want.
Tip #1. Visit Your Dentist Regularly:
It can be easy to skip a visit to your dentist if you’re not feeling any pain in your mouth or have no reason to believe that something is wrong. But, this could be a very grave mistake. Your dentist is trained to notice potential issues in the very early stages before they get bad enough to start causing you to feel a toothache. You may also consider visiting a San Diego cosmetic dentist if you have a concern or want to fix a cosmetic issue. There are many cosmetic dentists who can help you out so get in contact with one now!
In addition to finding potential dental issues before they become worse, your dentist will also be able to talk through your dental hygiene routine with you and help you by offering tips and advice on how to improve it for your personal needs. And, your risk of suffering from oral cancer will decrease with regular dental check-ups since your dentist can recognize early signs and risk factors, before offering the appropriate prevention or treatment options. Discover more here about what your dentist can do to help you improve your daily oral hygiene routine.
Tip #2. Upgrade Your Toothbrush:
Whilst a manual toothbrush can certainly get the job done, upgrading to an electric toothbrush can make a massive difference to the cleanliness of your entire mouth. Electric toothbrushes do all the hard brush work for you, meaning that they’re easier to use and you’re more likely to brush for a longer, more effective amount of time as a result. Not only that, they’re also more likely to get to hard-to-reach places behind your mouth, and you can even get specially designed toothbrush heads to use between braces and other orthodontic appliances.
Even better – electric toothbrushes are becoming more and more affordable, making them easier to access for those on a tight budget. You might want to also think about pairing yours with an electric water flosser for a seriously squeaky clean result.
Tip #3. Floss Daily:
Brushing your teeth every day is important, but flossing is even more important. No matter how often or how thoroughly you brush, you’ll never be able to get rid of all the little particles of food hidden and lodged in between your teeth. When left alone, this leads to plaque and tartar build-up under the surface of the gumlines, leading to painful cavities or serious issues such as gingivitis. It can also lead to periodontal disease, which can bring about disastrous symptoms such as tooth loss and bone destruction.
To floss your teeth properly, tightly wrap the floss around your fingers and insert it into the space between your teeth. Gently move it up and down, under the gum lines around two to three times. If bleeding occurs, this could be due to either gum disease or gingivitis, so it’s worth visiting your dentist for a check-up as soon as you can. Regular flossing can help to stop any bleeding due to mild or moderate gingivitis.
Tip #4. Quit Smoking:
If you are a smoker, then you’ll probably already know the terrible effects that it can have on your teeth. Not only will smoking stain and discolor your pearly whites, it can also lead to a wide range of health problems and greatly increase your risk of gum disease, cavities, and oral cancer.
Although it’s sometimes possible to reverse the stains on your teeth for smoking, long-term cigarette use can cause the stain to soak deeper and deeper into the enamel, making it even more difficult to rectify. In addition, smoking can damage healthy gums, leading to gums receding. This leaves large pockets around the teeth, making the teeth appear longer and creating dark spaces between them.
There are many options for quitting smoking that you may want to consider. If going ‘cold turkey’ is something that you’ve tried and don’t feel able to do, nicotine replacement therapies may help. Nicotine gum, patches, vaping with Gourmet E Liquid, and inhalers are all tried and tested methods for smoking cessation.
Tip #5. Drink Plenty of Water:
Drinking plenty of water isn’t just important for your body; your teeth need water too! Drinking water after meals is the best way to keep your teeth as clean as possible when you don’t have access to a toothbrush straight away. Drinking water helps to flush the teeth clean of any food particles, and discourages plaque and tartar build-up, helping to fight off decay and cavities.
If it’s possible in your area, drinking water from the tap can often be the best choice for your teeth compared to bottled options. Not only is it cheaper to obtain, but tap water contains the recommended dosage of fluoride, which helps to promote tooth health and discourage decay. Stick to water whenever you can, as frequently consuming sugary or acidic drinks can dramatically increase tooth decay rates.
Tip #6. Look After Your Overall Health:
Many people see their teeth as being separate from other physical health problems, but the fact is that there are several conditions which can have a knock-on effect on your dental and oral health. Diabetes, high blood pressure, obesity, anxiety, and bruxism (teeth grinding) can all have a massive impact on the health and appearance of your smile. And, if your body is already under strain from one health condition, it makes it even more difficult to treat another.
The good news is that the majority of conditions which impact your dental health can be improved by eating well, getting enough exercise, staying hydrated and improving your sleeping habits. If you’re worried that a health condition is also affecting your teeth, speak to your doctor or dentist as soon as possible as they will be able to provide professional advice on the next steps to take.
Tip #7. See Your Dentist as Quickly as Possible:
If you’ve noticed something abnormal in your mouth or are experiencing pain, it’s important to see your dentist as quickly as possible. The chances are that, if the pain is bad enough, you need Emergency Dental Treatment. No matter how uncomfortable a visit to the dentist may be, it’s vital to understand that dental problems do not go away on their own, and leaving it longer is only going to worsen the issue. In fact, what may have only required a tiny filling could easily turn into a root canal and a crown, depending on how long the problem goes untreated. So, don’t leave it to chance!
Tooth decay can happen to everybody, even if you’re looking after your teeth well. Treating it as quickly as possible will help to stop it from spreading, in addition to maintaining the structure and stability of the affected tooth. If left untreated, decay can quickly spread to other teeth and even cause infections elsewhere in your body.
Tip #8. Limit Stain-Inducing Food and Drinks:
Understanding which foods and drinks are more likely to stain your teeth can help you keep them whiter and brighter for longer. Coffee, tea, and red wine are well known for staining teeth. Although it’s not as dangerous a habit, consuming these liquids works in a similar way to smoking, building up a superficial stain that can be polished off by your hygienist, or working deeper into the tooth enamel over time.
If you can’t go without your coffee or enjoy a glass of red wine every now and then, drinking through a straw can be a great preventative measure to help reduce the risk of staining on your teeth. In some cases, it can help to reduce the risk of tooth decay. It can also be helpful to frequently rinse your mouth with plain water so that the staining liquid doesn’t sit on your teeth between meals.
Tip #9. Visit the Hygienist:
Last but not least, visiting your hygienist twice per year will help you with the upkeep and maintenance of a healthy, white smile. Regular professional teeth cleanings can also help you reduce your risk of periodontal disease, which produces symptoms such as swollen, bleeding and painful gums and a higher risk of stroke, heart disease, and diabetes.
In addition to making your teeth look cleaner and whiter, a visit to the hygienist also means that your mouth will be screened for conditions such as oral cancer, high blood pressure, gum disease and other problems that are always best caught out earlier. So, the more often you go, the better. Twice per year is recommended by dental professionals.
If you found these tips helpful, we’d love to get your feedback!