Oral Health: An Investment In Your Overall Health

Oral Health: An Investment In Your Overall Health
Your oral health is more important than you might realize! It impacts various aspects of your lives- from being healthy to feeling self-confident, from enjoying food and to personal relationships and more. So, it is necessary to focus on oral health as this can lead to problems that are bigger than an unpleasant smile. For many, the results of oral neglect may have been dental problems such as tooth decay and gum disease, but the effects of poor oral health can go further, leading to serious health consequences.

Here is a simple oral hygiene routine you can sink your teeth into for improving your dental hygiene and health.

Brushing:

Let us ‘brush up’ on the procedure:

Brush your teeth twice a day for at least 2 minutes. While brushing, make sure to use a gentle circular motion to avoid damaging the enamel.

Toothbrush :

Try using soft-bristled toothbrushes, as they are gentle on teeth and gums while being able to remove bacteria and plaque. Also, replace your toothbrush about every 3-4 months or sooner, as the bristles and are no longer as effective.

Toothpaste:

One of the decisions you will face to protect your teeth is which toothpaste to use. Fluoride is the common cavity-fighting ingredient in most toothpaste, but there have been controversial debates around the side effects of fluoride, especially when used in excess. So try opting for a toothpaste that gives an effective cleaning without the risk.

Flossing:

Floss your teeth once a day as it helps in removing bacteria, plaque, and food from between your teeth. It is important to floss correctly to avoid the potential risk of damaging your teeth and gums.

The procedure:

1. Use 45 cm of floss and wrap each end around your fingers and gently lower it in between your teeth.
2. Follow the curve of your teeth to avoid damaging your gums.
3. As you move to the next tooth, make sure you do not reinsert a used piece of floss.
4. Once you have finished, throw the floss away. Reusing dental floss is not a good oral hygiene practice since it can distribute bacteria to other parts of your mouth.

Rinsing:

Mouthwash or mouth rinse is a useful addition to your daily oral hygiene routine. It helps in cleaning debris and plaque on your teeth that have been left by the toothbrush. Rinsing your mouth with mouthwash also freshens your breath.

To maintain your dental health, try using an alcohol-free mouthwash. The ethanol in the alcohol-based mouthwash can kill almost all the bacteria, including the good ones, causing an imbalance. It can lead to problems such as bad breath. Also, alcohol acts as a drying agent, which contributes to dry mouth, causing bad breath.

People with dental implants should consider opting for a fluoride-free mouthwash as fluoride causes corrosion to the titanium top layer of the implants.

The procedure:

1. Add the recommended quantity of mouthwash and swish vigorously, making sure the liquid is inside the mouth and in between the teeth.
2. Do not dilute the mouthwash with water, as this may reduce its intensity. For best results, avoid eating, drinking, or smoking for at least 30 minutes after using the mouthwash. It is best to use a mouthwash after brushing and flossing.

Additional tips for oral hygiene:

1. Clean Your Tongue: You should clean the surface of your tongue daily with a tongue cleaner. It helps in removing bacteria from the surface of your tongue.
2. Healthy Diet: Healthy food choices are better for your teeth. Eating crunchy fruit and vegetables contain high fibers and provides stimulation for your jaw. 3. Avoid sugary and acidic foods as these erode your tooth enamel that can lead to cavities.
3. Regular Dental Checkups: A regular dental check-up is necessary as it helps in keeping your teeth and gums healthy. You should have a dental visit at least every six months or as recommended by your dentist.
4. Stay Hydrated: A dry mouth reduces the production of saliva. Therefore creates a breeding ground for bacteria, resulting in bad breath.
5. Avoid smoking: Smokers are three to six times more likely to develop gum disease or periodontal disease, which can attack roots and cause teeth to fall out.

As designed, your teeth should last a lifetime. And with good oral care and routine visits to your dentist, they sure will.
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