Two weeks ago, I took my two kids to the dentist. My oldest is a great brusher, loves to floss and grabs a Granny Smith for a snack. Unfortunately brushing my youngest one’s teeth becomes a wrestling match every time she sees a toothbrush. But we keep at it, because having healthy teeth and a healthy mouth are important and can boost overall health. Plus, one day she will like brushing and flossing… right?
Here are three tips to keeping your smile healthy.
1. Brush and floss. According to the American Dental Association, you should brush twice per day with a soft-bristled brush. The size and shape of your brush should fit your mouth, allowing you to reach all areas easily. Flossing should go hand-in-hand with brushing because decay-causing bacteria still linger between teeth where toothbrush bristles can’t reach. Flossing helps remove plaque and food particles from between the teeth and under the gum line. If bacteria is left there to grow, the periodontal disease gingivitis may occur. Gingivitis (gum disease) is an infection of the tissues that support and surround your teeth and can even cause tooth loss. Research has shown a strong correlation between periodontal disease and other health problems like heart disease, diabetes, stroke and respiratory illnesses. There is even increasing evidence that people with periodontal disease are more likely to develop osteoporosis. So, brush and FLOSS!
2. Visit the dentist. For some it may be an unpleasant experience, but for the most part you walk out with clean teeth! Regular visits to the dentist can help prevent potential problems in the future. A dentist can monitor changes and can help spot oral health problems early on when treatment is likely to be simpler and more affordable. A dentist also helps prevent many oral problems from developing in the first place. And, visiting your dentist regularly is important because some diseases or medical conditions have symptoms that can appear in the mouth.
3. SMILE… a lot! Smiling is a proven mood booster. However, if the color of your teeth is preventing you from showing everyone your radiant smile, try some easy and natural whitening remedies. Brush your teeth with baking soda and little hydrogen peroxide (the consistency should be runny, NOT gritty. Brush your teeth as usual, making sure you brush those back teeth too. Hydrogen peroxide is an anti-bacterial agent, works great as a total mouth and gum cleaner, and keeps the mouth free of germs. Also cut back on foods like red wine and coffee, which are both culprits of yellow teeth. Make sure you drink plenty of water throughout the day as well.
For more about healthy teeth, click here.