3 Tips for a Healthier Smile

A beautiful smile is a healthy smile. Our three simple tips for gaining and maintaining a healthy oral microbiome include: (1) an effective at-home oral hygiene routine, (2) a healthy diet, and (3) visiting your dentist regularly. Continue reading to learn more. 

  1. Protect Your Teeth

Your pearly whites are tough, but they must be respected. Daily oral health routines and avoiding damaging habits can help preserve the beauty and function of your smile.

Consistent Oral Routines

Healthy, beautiful smiles are maintained at home. Thorough brushing and flossing remove particles and tartar on and between your teeth. If not removed, this leads to plaque and decay. Practice these healthy habits twice daily: 

  • Brush teeth thoroughly with a fluoridated toothpaste.
  • Brush your tongue to remove stinky, bad-breath-causing bacterial waste.
  • Floss between teeth to reach areas that your toothbrush can’t.

Your dentist may also prescribe a chlorhexidine mouthwash to control bacteria and plaque accumulation in your oral cavity.

Avoid Chewing on Hard Objects

Crunch! Crack! Is that the sound of your teeth breaking? Chewing on hard foods (like ice or hard candy) or non-food items (such as fingernails and pen caps) can lead to your enamel cracking or chipping. Don’t damage the appearance and inhibit the function of your teeth. Please avoid this bad habit at all costs.

Avoid Staining Foods and Tobacco

Staining foods and tobacco usage can lead to discoloration. If you must drink a cup of coffee or glass of wine, rinse your mouth out with water after consumption. This will help remove discoloring tannins from your enamel.

If your bright smile is starting to fade, choose in-office whitening solutions over at-home whitening treatments. At-home whitening treatments can be dangerous and ineffective. The safest way to whiten your smile is in the hands of a professional. Surface-level yellowing can be lightened with in-office whitening treatments. Deeper, irreversible discoloration must be remedied with a porcelain restoration.

  1. Maintain a Balanced Diet

A healthy diet is important for your entire body, including your teeth. Choose foods that are:

  •  Calcium-rich to help bones and teeth grow and stay strong.
  • Rich in omega-3 fatty acids to lessen inflammation along the gumline and help prevent periodontal disease. 
  • Crunchy and chewy fruits and vegetables to increase saliva production which leads to your mouth being washed out more often.

Stay Hydrated

Saliva is nature’s mouthwash. The more hydrated you are, the more saliva should be present in your mouth. Both saliva and water rinse out the mouth, which removes food particles and oral bacteria. Fewer food particles and oral bacteria are linked to less tooth decay. 

Limit Sugar

Like most humans, the bacteria in your mouth are attracted to sugar. Oral bacteria populations flourish with daily sugar intake, so it makes sense that sugary drinks are directly linked to significant tooth decay.

If you have a sweet tooth, xylitol is a better choice than regular cane sugar. Xylitol is a widely used sugar substitute and is an ingredient in many “sugar-free” mints, chewing gums, and other treats. Researchers have discovered that xylitol could directly affect the ecology of dental plaque and help decrease the rate of cavities.

Limiting daily sugar intake in conjunction with routine tooth brushing and flossing can help keep bacteria at bay.

  1. Bi-Annual Check-Ups

Twice annual dental checkups are recommended by the American Dental Association. This ensures the periodic examination and maintenance of your teeth. Additionally, dental hygienists can help clean your teeth deeper than you can by yourself at home.

Schedule a Check-Up Today

It’s never too late to care for your smile. Lead your teeth to the path of wellness and redemption by scheduling a dental check-up with Dr. Cureton in Salinas, CA. Call (831) 449-8363 or contact us online to schedule an appointment. 

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