How to Keep Teeth Clean and Healthy

Maintaining clean and healthy teeth is important for oral health. Dental health involves more than preventing cavities. Research shows a correlation between a person's overall health and oral health.

Poor dental hygiene can lead to gum disease, tooth decay, and other issues that can cause pain, low self-esteem, and even tooth loss. These conditions can cause malnutrition, speech difficulties, and other work, school, or personal challenges. You can avoid these issues by maintaining good oral hygiene at home and visiting your dentist regularly. The following are some tips that can help you maintain clean and healthy teeth:

Brushing Twice Daily

The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends brushing teeth twice daily for about two to three minutes. If you only brush your teeth once daily, try brushing twice daily—in the morning and at night. Flossing and brushing after each meal is the most efficient method to prevent plaque buildup on the gums and teeth. The toothbrush and floss are important tools to combat gum recession, cavities, and other dental issues. Scrub each tooth gently in a circular motion for not less than two minutes when brushing your teeth.

Use Fluoride Toothpaste

You should consider using a fluoride toothpaste with the ADA Seal of Acceptance. Fluoride helps prevent cavities by remineralizing the tooth enamel and making the teeth less susceptible to plaque accumulation. To improve your protection, ask your dentist about fluoride treatments in the office and fluoride mouth rinses for home use.

Clean Your Tongue When Brushing

Oral bacteria can also be found on your tongue. If you floss and brush your teeth but do not clean your tongue, the harmful bacteria can be recirculated once you finish. Brushing the tongue is also beneficial for preventing bad breath. If brushing the tongue makes you vomit, try using a tongue scraper. It is cheap and available at almost any pharmacy.

Floss Regularly

The American Dental Association recommends flossing teeth at least once daily. Most dentists advocate flossing more often and every time you brush. You do not have to worry about harming the gums when you use the correct technique. If you find regular dental floss challenging, other options include floss holders, water flossers, and pre-strung dental floss picks.

Clean the Teeth After Every Meal

Although brushing after dinner, lunch, or snacks is not strictly necessary, it is always a good idea to be mindful of food particles. Rinsing with water can help eliminate acids, bacteria, and food particles and promote saliva production. You can also floss when necessary, especially if food is stuck between the teeth.

Use a Fluoridated Mouthwash

You can also use mouthwash, but using it more than twice daily or after every meal is not recommended. Ensure that the mouthwash you choose is alcohol-free. Additionally, you can choose therapeutic mouth rinses, but you should first talk to your dentist about your options.

Consider a Balanced Diet

Having a balanced diet is crucial not only for longevity but also for the health of the gums and teeth. Proper diet differs from person to person. However, it is important to maintain a balanced diet by including various fruits, dairy products, grains, nuts, vegetables, and lean meats.

Reduce your sugar consumption and balance alkaline and acidic foods. Your diet should also contain adequate amounts of vitamin D, phosphorus, and calcium. Calcium is essential for bone and teeth health, while vitamin D and phosphorus help with calcium absorption.

According to a National Institutes of Health (NIH) study, vitamin D significantly lowers bacterial levels in the oral cavity. This explains why vitamin D deficiency is associated with tooth loss. Individuals who take adequate amounts of vitamin D and calcium are significantly less likely to develop gingivitis.

Stay Hydrated

Water is necessary to produce saliva, which washes away bacteria, acids, and food particles. However, most people do not drink enough water to meet their daily water needs. Stay hydrated by drinking water regularly.

Dentists recommend drinking water throughout the day when you feel thirsty or want to eat. If you need a change of beverage, milk is a good choice. However, you should avoid carbonated beverages and other acidic or sugary drinks.

Drink Milk

Milk and other dairy products are rich in calcium and phosphorus. In the US, they are vitamin D fortified. One glass a day is enough for the recommended amount. If you are uncomfortable with milk, try other alternatives like yogurt and cheese. Milk, yogurt, and cheese can also help neutralize the acidity of the oral cavity.

Consider Snacks That Are Teeth Friendly

Snacking is linked to most poor eating habits. It usually includes a lot of starches, acids, and sugars. These are bad for your dental health and can undermine a nutritious diet. Therefore, snacking should be kept to a minimum.

If you must snack, choose healthy options like vegetables, fruits, and nuts. When consuming, remember the impact of these foods on your gums and teeth and how to prevent or lessen that impact.

Vitamin C Intake

Vitamin C is essential for oral health, particularly in regenerating and maintaining gum tissues and fighting oral infections. According to a recent study, vitamin C is essential in lowering the severity of periodontal disease and gingivitis in its advanced stages. You will receive plenty of vitamin C if you eat diverse vegetables and fruits. Some solid options include Brussels sprouts, kiwi, guava, and peppers.

Make Omega-3 Fatty Acids a Regular Part of Your Diet

Several scientific studies have shown that individuals who consume a diet rich in omega-3 fatty acids or incorporate fish oil supplements into their diet have a 30% lower susceptibility to gingivitis. The most suitable natural sources of omega-3 fatty acids are mackerel, salmon, and other types of fatty fish, along with flaxseeds and walnuts.

Minimize Your Sugar Consumption

Although sugar is necessary to produce energy, you can obtain all the sugar your body requires from a balanced diet. Sugar is never required as a supplement to your diet. Sugar produces acids that erode plaque and tooth enamel. Plaque is the primary cause of dental decay and gum disease.

Alcohol is also bad for teeth because it contains sugar, carbohydrates, acidic substances, and carbonation, among others. People who drink frequently are far more likely to develop decay, gum disease, and mouth sores, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention list alcohol as one of the main risk factors for oral cancer.

Enjoy Crunchy Vegetables and Fruits

Although acidic fruits can be dangerous, crunchy ones are excellent for teeth. During the day, crunchy vegetables and fruits are natural toothbrushes, scrubbing your teeth. Crunchy meals also promote the healthy production of saliva, which is the mouth's natural cleansing, immune, and hydration system. This means crunchy vegetables and fruits are ideal daytime snacks, especially if you cannot brush your teeth during the day.

Take Care of Your Toothbrush

Harmful bacteria can enter and re-enter your mouth through a toothbrush, which is an ideal breeding place for microorganisms. Make sure to thoroughly rinse the toothbrush before and after using it. It should be kept upright and inside an open container. It is important to keep your brush dry and ventilated because bacteria prefer dark, moist places, which you would like to prevent.

You should replace the head of your toothbrush or electric toothbrush regularly. According to the American Dental Association, you should replace it after three months or once the bristles become frayed. If your bristles are worn, you cannot scrub away plaque as effectively.

Drink Healthy Teas

While not every tea is healthy, regularly consuming the correct tea can improve your well-being. The antioxidants in black and green teas benefit overall health by helping prevent oral infections and plaque buildup.

According to a National Institutes of Health study, people who regularly consume green tea have decreased risks of developing gum disease. Antioxidants are believed to reduce inflammation associated with gum disease. Additionally, it has been discovered that green tea prevents and improves breath more effectively than mints.

Stay Active

Frequent exercise improves not just your overall health but also the condition of your oral cavity. A National Institutes of Health study found that people with sedentary lifestyles had a higher risk of developing periodontal disease. Although intense exercises are fantastic, even simple activities like walking for fifteen minutes can have a significant impact.

Reduce Your Tea and Coffee Consumption

While tea and coffee are frequently consumed, drinking too much can discolor the teeth and cause bad breath. If you enjoy them, reduce how much you drink with a straw to avoid getting too much in your teeth. To lessen the chance of discoloration, rinse the mouth with water after eating something.

Reduce Your Stress Levels

Although inevitable, stress can negatively affect your dental condition and overall health. Research shows that stress increases your risk of gum disease-causing infections and increases the likelihood that you may neglect your normal dental care.

Exercise is one of the best ways to reduce stress. Additionally, deep breathing techniques, yoga, meditation, slow muscle relaxation, and other techniques can help you manage it.

Keep Your Mouth From Drying

Avoiding xerostomia, or dry mouth, is crucial since it increases your risk of dental decay and gum disease. If you find that dry mouth is a common issue, talk to your dentist about it. Stay well hydrated, as dehydration is the primary cause of dry mouth. Monitor your prescriptions, as they can lead to dry mouth. Also, talk to your dentist before starting any new medication regimen.

Stay Away From Tobacco Products

You may already be aware that smoking causes cancer and a host of other unpleasant conditions, but you might not be aware of how smoking can harm your teeth. This includes any tobacco product, like cigars, cigarettes, chewing tobacco, and pipes.

These substances can:

  • Permanently stain your teeth
  • Harm oral tissue
  • Increase your risk of gum disease
  • Lead to oral cancer

Compared to non-users, tobacco smokers have twice the risk of experiencing tooth loss.

Seek Regular Dental Care

You should consider getting your teeth cleaned professionally and having your gums and teeth inspected by a dental professional twice a year. Many younger individuals make the typical mistake of putting off getting dental work done just because their teeth and gums seem and feel okay. Initially, oral health problems are frequently asymptomatic. However, a dentist can detect and treat them before they worsen and become more costly.

Do Not Grind Or Clench Your Teeth

Additionally, grinding and clenching your teeth will gradually erode the enamel from your teeth. Enamel loss from grinding is gradual, but that from clenching might be more severe. Clenching can produce enough power to split your teeth in half. Stress is usually the leading cause of teeth grinding and clenching, although other possible causes exist. If you are dealing with any of these issues, there are methods to keep your teeth healthy, like using a nightguard.

What are the Advantages of Having Clean Teeth?

Regular dental cleaning helps keep teeth healthy by preventing gum disease and tooth decay. It also helps improve teeth' appearance, as tartar stains the tooth surface, causing it to appear yellow. Therefore, cleaning teeth can help remove tartar deposits and significantly improve a person's teeth' appearance.

Teeth cleaning offers preventative benefits that save patients money in the long run. The dentist examines patients during treatment to identify any emerging dental issues. Dental problems are usually cheaper to treat early before they cause serious tooth damage. These examinations can also help you detect health problems like oral cancer.

What More Can You Do to Keep Your Gums and Teeth Healthy?

If you have grooves in your teeth where plaque and tartar build easily, ask the dentist about dental sealants. Dental sealants are applied to the teeth grooves to prevent plaque buildup and decay. The sealant also protects the teeth and functions like tooth armor.

Find a Professional Dentist Near Me

Although maintaining healthy teeth can seem difficult, it is doable with these practical recommendations. To keep your teeth healthy and have fun, you must be smart about what you eat, drink, chew and undergo regular dental examinations. Our dental professionals at Dr Joseph Goodman Clinic are available to help restore your dental health and give you a beautiful smile. Call our Beverly Hills, CA, office today at 310-860-9311 to schedule your dental appointment.

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Dr. Joseph M. Goodman, DDS Beverly Hills Center for Cosmetic Dentistry Advanced Cosmetic and Implant Dentistry. 2nd Floor at 241 1/2 S. Beverly Drive Beverly Hills, CA 90212