NATURAL TEETH CARE
Healthy teeth are attractive and they give you confidence as you go about your daily activities. It is said that what is on your mouth reveals what is in your body.
If your teeth are healthy and strong, then it is most likely that the rest of your health is good day. Did you know that an unhealthy mouth can increase your risk of stroke and diabetes?
So in addition to beauty, you have one more reason to ensure that your teeth are healthy—To minimise your risk of other health complications.
The importance of healthy teeth and good oral hygiene
A beautiful smile increases your confidence. When your teeth are white and sparkly, you feel happier and freer to interact with people. Research also shows that smiling boosts your mood and makes you have a positive view of life in general.
If you don’t take care of your teeth, other than having an unattractive mouth, it can lead to other serious problems such as :
Inflammation in the mouth caused by poor oral hygiene weakens the body’s ability to control blood sugar.
People with heart disease often suffer from periodontitis (gum infection), although the connection between the two is not yet clear to researchers.
Low birth weight for babies
Pregnant women who don’t practise good oral hygiene are at risk of giving birth to children with a low birth weight, leaving the babies susceptible to problems such as lung conditions and learning conditions.
Digestion of food begins in the mouth and when your mouth and if your mouth is not hygienic, this can lead to irritable bowel syndrome and other digestive issues.
Good oral hygiene will ensure that you don’t lose your teeth too early. The leading cause of tooth loss is lack of profession dental care and poor oral hygiene.
Avoid tooth decay by practising good oral hygiene. Tooth decay occurs when holes form in the enamel of a tooth. This occurs due to a build of a whitish deposit, which is a combination of bacteria and food.
A routine oral hygiene
A good oral hygiene program involves:
Brushing your teeth
You should brush your teeth at least twice a day. The recommended time for every brushing session is two minutes, ensuring that the toothbrush gets into all the areas of your mouth. Here are some tips for effective brushing.
• Ensure that the toothpaste you use contains fluoride because it strengthens teeth and prevents tooth decay.
• Use a toothbrush which has soft bristles. Hard ones can hurt your gum.
• Don’t overdo your brushing, twice a day is enough. More than that will wear down your enamel and damage your gums.
• Replace your toothbrush every three or four months
• Ensure that you also brush your tongue to get rid of bacteria
• Rinse your brush afterwards so remove bacteria stuck there and then store it somewhere it can air dry.
• Wait for an hour after eating before you brush. After you eat, the acids in the mouth soften the enamel, which makes it easily damaged.
Most dentists agree that flossing is more important than brushing yet most people don’t floss. The most common reasons is that food does not get stuck between their teeth. Yet the aim of flossing is more than that. It’s to remove plaque, which can only be done by professional dental cleaning or flossing.
- Cut about thirty centimetres of floss
- Hold it between the thumbs and the forefinger
- Guide it to your mouth and guide it gently along the tooth
- Make a c shape and move to the adjacent tooth
- Repeat this procedure between all the spaces
Visit your dentist regularly
It is recommended that everyone should see a dentist twice a year; however you can talk to your dentist and work out how often you should go depending on your dental needs.
Feel comfortable to ask your dentist any questions you have related to your dental hygiene.
A regular dental visit involves:
• A check up, where your dentist will look at your mouth thoroughly, checking for cavities, plaques etc. and your gums.
• Cleaning of your teeth to remove the build-up of plaque and tartar. Your dentist will also floss your teeth to ensure there’s no grime hiding there.
- Eat good healthy food
Foods that are good for your teeth include:
• Food that is rich in fibre like fruits and vegetables. These foods encourage the flow of saliva in your mouth, which in turn reduce the effect of the acids and enzymes that can attack your teeth.
• Dairy products like milk, cheese and yoghurt. They contain calcium which helps to make your teeth stronger.
• Sugarless gum helps to remove food particles by encouraging the secretion of saliva.
• Foods and drinks that contain fluoride.
Foods to avoid include:
• Sweets and candy. Sugary foods and drinks are the biggest enemies to your teeth. Germs and bacteria in your mouth thrive when there is sugar present.
• Avoid acidic drinks like fizzy drinks and fruit juices. Go for less acidic drinks like tea, milk, coffee and water.
• Sticky starchy foods such as crisps and soft bread. These foods easily get stuck between your teeth, which are difficult to reach.
• Drinks that dry out your mouth such as alcohol and medications.
Avoid tobacco products
This is something that tobacco users dislike to hear. Tobacco products such as cigarettes are not only dangerous for your general body health; they’re also bad for your teeth. If you do smoke, make that decision to quit and have healthy teeth.
Effects of tobacco:
• Stains the teeth, making them appear unsightly.
• Can also cause your teeth to fall out.
• Can also cause cancer of the mouth, lips and tongue.
• Reduces blood flow to your gums which is important in keeping them healthy and strong.
• Reduces your sense of taste and smell
• Raises the temperature in your mouth thus damaging and killing crucial cells.