By taking good care of your dental needs, your teeth will last a lifetime. Good dental hygiene includes cleaning your teeth, gums and tongue properly and seeing your dentist at least twice a year. The biggest reasons for losing teeth are gum disease and tooth decay, but dental care can avoid this.
Plaque is a white film that forms on teeth. It is sticky and contains bacteria that causes cavities in teeth. Cavities, also known as tooth decay, can lead to toothaches and cause teeth to crack or break. Natural organisms native to the mouth coincide with mucus and bits of food, creating plaque. Acids are produced by the plaque when you eat foods that are high in starch or sugar. This acid will eat away at the protective coating on your teeth called enamel.
If plaque stays in your mouth too long, you’ll get a cavity from the breakdown of enamel. Additionally, an accumulation of plaque is what provokes the onset of gum disease. Brushing every day and flossing to remove debris between the teeth extricates plaque. When we fail to brush and floss routinely, plaque is permitted to solidify and thicken. We call that hardened plaque “tartar.” Tartar typically aggregates at the line where the gums meet the teeth. Gum tissue may become swollen or bleed when brushed a sign of gingivitis, the earliest stage of gum disease.
In the more serious stage of periodontitis, infected pockets form and the gums actually recede from the teeth. If not treated, the jawbone, gums and connective tissue around teeth are destroyed and teeth can fall out.
To control plaque and tartar buildup, teeth must be properly maintained at home. Visits to the dentist for regular cleanings are also in order. For the most effective cleaning, your toothbrush should be held at a slight angle as short back-and-forth motions brush the teeth. Brush the outside, inside and chewing surfaces of your teeth, spending about two minutes in all, than gently brush your tongue. This will eliminate bacteria and make your breath smell better. Ideally, you should brush each time you eat, but twice a day is adequate for most people.
Experts agree that you should use a soft bristle toothbrush for brushing. If your toothbrush is worn and the bristles are in bad shape, you should replace it immediately or at least get a new one every three to four months. Brushing with a motorized brush is not enough to fully clean. This is a myth. The single efficacious method for eliminating plaque at the gum line as well as between your teeth is through routine brushing and flossing. You may also utilize an interdental brush for tough to reach spots.
If you want to floss as best you can, here’s what you do. First bring a string of floss in between two of your teeth. Step two, move the floss around each tooth base northward and southward for a couple of repetitions. Find a spot on your piece of floss that’s yet to be used and move to the next tooth. Always hit the spot behind the tooth you just finished.
You can have a better time with waxed floss. Your dentist and hygienist can instruct you if you have difficulty using long lengths of floss. Floss holders are available. People who are just starting to floss might notice some bleeding or gum discomfort at first. If it doesn’t go away, they need to call their dentist. You also need to think about what you eat along with flossing and brushing. Consuming sugary drinks or sweet, sugary snacks in lieu of healthy meals and snacks creates a breeding ground for tooth decay. This lengthens the time your teeth are exposed to the acids in foods. But there are foods out there which can assist decay prevention. Aged cheese can neutralize the damaging acids, so you may want to take a bite as a finishing touch to the rest of your meal.
Foods with high water content such as pears or apples help dilute sugars. These fruits also stimulate the production of saliva which will help to rinse away sticky food pieces. Sugarless gum will also make you produce more saliva, washing the bacteria away. Calcium plays a vital role in the health of your teeth, and foods such as milk and green leafy vegetables are rich with calcium, an excellent addition to your diet. Fluoride is also instrumental in battling cavities.
Fluoride is available with a fluoride solution or rinse supplied by your dentist if your water supply is one that is not already fluoridated. If you want to have a healthy smile, check up with your dentist twice a year. Aside from those routine visits, contact your dentist if you experience bleeding gums, mouth pain or if you notice alterations in your bite. You can keep your strong healthy teeth for a long, long time with regular dental checkups and the relentless practice of great oral hygiene.