Being blessed with a great smile and teeth is sometimes just luck or winning the genetics lottery. Genetics do play a role in your physical health and the same goes for your dental health as well, but there is a lot you can control and do to improve your dental hygiene routine yourself. Check out these top five ways our dentists and hygienists suggest to keep your mouth healthy and your dental hygiene routine on point!
Improve Your Dental Hygiene With These Tips
Brush your teeth with the right tools.
Everyone knows you should be brushing your teeth twice daily. Food and other bacteria can get trapped in your mouth, gums, and in between your teeth if you are not brushing regularly, but did you know that choosing the right tools for brushing is just as important?
There are numerous types of toothbrushes out there nowadays, but at Family Dentistry of Columbus, we recommend using an electric toothbrush and spending at least 30 seconds brushing in each area of your mouth. Some even have a timer and different cadences to help with this. If an electric toothbrush does not fit your budget, use a soft-bristled brush to keep your smile bright and clean. You want the right tools that will clean your teeth without inflicting pain or being too abrasive. Too much pressure or hard bristles can wear away the enamel on your teeth, which protects your teeth from cavities and other issues.
You also want to replace that toothbrush or head (if using an electric toothbrush) every three months. We are happy to consult with you about your choice of toothbrushes and which would work best for your individual needs. Ask our dental team at your next dental appointment!
Floss twice daily, too.
Yes, we know, we know! You are probably tired of hearing about it, and chances are you have probably just fibbed and told your dentist or hygienist in the past that you DO floss to save yourself a lecture. (Hint: we can totally tell if you’re lying). We know flossing takes a little extra time and can be painful if you haven’t done so in a while, but flossing is an essential part of dental hygiene! If you can’t do it every time you brush your teeth, at least appease your favorite Columbus, GA dentist, and do it before you go to bed!
Flossing before bed can save you a lot of trouble in the long run, as it is the only way to remove food that gets stuck between your teeth. You want to remove it before you sleep through the night, as it could already turn into plaque by morning. Not only will it prevent cavities, but it is a crucial step for your gum health. Poor gum health can lead to gingivitis or other gum diseases. It might be a bit painful if you haven’t done it in a while– and your gums will likely bleed– but it will get easier over time.
If you have braces or other hardware in your mouth or just sensitive gums, you can use a water pick instead. A water pick will safely shoot a stream of water directly onto your teeth and gums to remove leftover food particles and can be just as effective as flossing but without the floss.
Drink water after each meal!
Yes, not only will staying hydrated do wonders for your overall physical health, it’ll help your teeth, too! Having a glass of water after each meal can wash away the acid and bacteria that might be brewing. Water is the better choice too as acidic and caffeinated drinks are not suitable for your teeth. Coffee and wine can stain your teeth too, so grab a straw for those beverages or be sure to drink water after or alongside them.
Add a mouthwash to your dental hygiene routine.
Adding a mouthwash according to your specific dental needs can be a huge game-changer in your dental hygiene routine. An antibacterial mouthwash should be a part of any dental health regimen because it serves as an added defense against the bacteria that might be brewing in the soft tissue of your mouth or crevices that you might not always be able to reach with simply brushing your teeth. As we get older, too, and the enamel wears, a pro-enamel mouthwash can help prevent cavities as well. If you are not sure which mouthwash would be best to add as part of your regimen, ask your dentist for their recommendations. This brings us to our last tip: get a dentist!
Get the right dental team!
Lastly, taking care of your dental hygiene is a group effort. If you do not already have a trusted dentistry office in your area, reach out and schedule a dental exam and cleaning today. Regularly seeing your dentist in Columbus, GA can prevent larger issues– sometimes extremely painful– down the road. Half of the battle with dental problems is prevention. You should treat your dental health just like you do your physical health: go to the doctor yearly and go to the dentist twice a year!
It is not as easy as brushing your teeth. When you see your dentist regularly, you will receive a dental exam each visit and routine x-rays every 2-3 years. There are various mouth cancers as well that you might not think about, but you should be routinely checked for those diseases as well– especially if you are a smoker or use tobacco products. If you are pregnant, you want to visit your dentist even more regularly; it is recommended that you visit your dentist once a trimester because the baby is taking some of those needed vitamins and nutrients that your teeth need, too!
Choose Family Dentistry of Columbus for Better Dental Hygiene
Whatever your current situation or dental history, our hygienists and dentists here at Family Dentistry of Columbus are here for you. We’re trusted by thousands of happy patients to care for family members of all ages, starting at three years old. We have the technology and tools to catch any dental concerns early– from cavities to mouth cancers– and provide you with a plan of action to ensure your smile stays healthy and bright for a long time!
Call our office today to schedule your next dental exam.