You grab your toothbrush a few times a day, brush for two minutes each time, and floss when you have time. Maybe sometimes you forget to brush, but if you are like a lot of people, you probably think you do a pretty good job of taking care of your smile. Unfortunately, a subpar dental hygiene routine is proven to be one of the biggest factors behind oral health problems.
Insufficient oral hygiene habits can lead to problems with everything from gum disease to decay, and bad habits have even been linked to some pretty scary diseases like heart disease and diabetes. At Making Lakeland Smile, we can help you with your oral health concerns, but the faster you adopt a stellar oral hygiene routine, the better off your oral health can be. Luckily, there are a lot of simple things you can do to improve your dental hygiene routine and really make a difference.
1. Look for ADA-Approved Products
The market for dental hygiene products is vast and pretty impressive. Brushing and flossing are simply necessities in modern life, and a lot of manufacturers sadly take advantage of that fact. You can get your hands on everything from whitening gels and specially formulated kinds of toothpaste to techy toothbrushes with supposed advantages.
While many of these products are just fine and some can actually enhance your dental hygiene routine, there are just as many that could be bad for your oral health. An easy way to make sure you are using products that are not going to cause problems is to purchase only ADA-approved products. These items have been assessed for their safety by the American Dental Association.
2. Always Brush Before You Fall Asleep
You spend your days rushing to get everything done, and the next thing you know, it’s bedtime, you’re nodding off, and you haven’t gotten a chance to brush your teeth. This happens to everyone on occasion, but it is critical that you don’t make a habit of going to sleep without freshly brushed teeth. Bacteria can accumulate in your mouth quickly once you’ve fallen asleep; you’re not drinking anything to wash the bacteria away or keep the population at bay. Everything you’ve put in your mouth before bedtime gets the chance to hang out in your mouth through the night, which breeds bacteria and can lead to plaque and decay.
3.Take Time to Clean Your Tongue
Did you know that the mouth can be home to over 700 different types of bacteria? Of course, not all of them are bad, but some of the worst can really hunker down, make a home for themselves, and cause a lot of problems. The scariest part about this whole idea is the fact that some of these types of bacteria prefer to hang out in the tiny bumps and crevices of your tongue. Lack of tongue brushing can lead to:
- Bad breath (halitosis)
- Yeast infections of the mouth (oral thrush)
- Heightened risks of periodontal disease
- Tongue discoloration
- Depressed tasting abilities
If you’re not brushing your tongue, it really is time to start. It only takes a small extra step as you brush your teeth and some toothbrushes actually have integrated tongue cleaners.
4. Simplify Flossing and Treat It as a Priority
The stats about people who rarely ever or never floss are terrifying to oral health professionals: about a third of people never floss their teeth at all and 37 percent report they don’t floss every day. If you are one of those who doesn’t make flossing a priority in your dental hygiene routine, your oral health can really pay the price. Flossing can protect against gum disease, decay, and tooth loss.
Some people have a legitimate reason behind not flossing. For example, maybe you have carpal tunnel syndrome, and holding stringy floss is just too painful. If flossing is difficult for you for whatever reason, talk to your dentist. Many good options are out there to help people floss when they find it a challenge, including pre-strung flosser picks and electronic flossing machines.
5. Say Yes to Mouthwash
Many people do skip mouthwash. For many years, mouthwash has been treated as an optional part of a dental hygiene routine. Truthfully, mouthwash can be optional, but it can also be a huge help to your oral health as well. Using a high-quality, ADA-approved mouthwash helps loosen plaque and tartar buildup so it is easier to remove when you brush, it can neutralize acidity in your mouth, and clean some areas of the mouth that may not always get hit with the toothbrush. If you don’t use mouthwash now, implementing it into your daily routine can be enough to make a considerable difference in your oral health.
Let’s Talk About Your Dental Hygiene and Proper Dental Care in Lakeland, FL
Are you doing all you can to protect your oral health, or could there be room for improvement? Upping your usual routine every day at home when you brush your teeth can really do a lot to support a healthy mouth and a nice smile. At Kawveh Nofallah, we provide superior dental services including professional whitening, root canals, and dentures. If you would like to know more about taking better care of your smile and your oral health, reach out to us Kawveh Nofallah, DMD for more information.
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