Is good oral health one of your New Year’s resolutions? Check out this blog to learn how to gain and maintain a healthy smile for years to come.
A new year, for many people, feels like a clean slate or a second chance to be better than they were before. Exercise more, eat healthily, save money, learn a new hobby—these are some of the most common New Year’s resolutions, and they are great ones! However, many of these go unfulfilled. The key to success may be setting your sights on a more attainable goal, such as prioritizing better oral health.
Once optimal oral health is achieved, it is easy to maintain. In this blog, we’ll discuss four simple tips to help you gain and maintain a healthy smile in 2021 and years to come.
Visit your dentist at the beginning of the year
Every mouth is different. So, rather than giving a blanket statement to brush twice a day and floss once a day, we recommend visiting your dentist to receive personalized oral hygiene recommendations.
During your routine visit, the dentist will perform a thorough examination of your teeth, gums, and jaw. A dental hygienist will also clean your teeth. Near the end of the appointment, the dentist will talk to you about your oral health, any problem areas, and how you can maintain a healthy mouth moving forward.
If you have any concerns or questions, this is the time to ask! There are no silly questions, and your dentist will be happy to answer them.
Create an effective oral hygiene routine
One of those questions may be, “what should my oral hygiene routine look like at home?” The dentist will offer advice that is specific to your mouth. If you want to start today, here are some of our recommendations:
- Brush once in the morning and once in the evening for two minutes each time
- Use fluoridated toothpaste
- Be sure to clean your tongue!
- Floss in the evening, after your last meal
- Rinse with an ADA-approved mouthwash
Eat a mouth-friendly diet
What you eat has just as much of an impact on your mouth as it does on your body. It’s no secret that consuming too much sugar leads to cavities, but many people don’t realize just how much sugar they consume daily. Processed foods like crackers and seemingly healthy foods like granola bars are often loaded with sugar. Reading food and nutrition labels is a good way to reduce the amount of sugar you eat.
Rather than focusing on what you shouldn’t eat, it is helpful to know about foods that promote good oral health, such as:
- Dairy products like cheese, milk, and yogurt
- Crunchy veggies like carrots and celery
- Leafy greens like spinach, kale, and lettuce
- Fibrous fruits like apples and pears
- Green tea
- Red meats and fatty fish
Quit bad habits
Smoking, chewing ice, nail-biting, and teeth grinding are some of the most detrimental habits for your teeth. Do all you can to completely quit these habits so that your teeth, gums, and jaw are as healthy as possible.
For tips and recommendations on how to quit these habits, check out this blog from the American Dental Association.
Schedule A Dental Cleaning and Exam Today
Ready to get your oral health back on track? Schedule an appointment with Dr. Cureton at our Salinas, CA dental practice. You’ll leave knowing exactly what to do to gain and maintain optimal oral health! Contact us online or call (831) 449-8363 today.