Tooth decay is one of the most common diseases affecting Australian children and adults. It can cause pain and discomfort and can affect eating, speaking and sleeping. The good news is that tooth decay is largely preventable through limiting sugary foods, regular toothbrushing, and regular dental check-ups.
#4 Best Oral Hygiene Tips for Healthy Teeth
No matter how good (or not-so-good) your current oral hygiene habits might be, there’s something small that you can start doing today to improve the health of your teeth and gums for the long term. To help keep your teeth in top condition, we have compiled some easy oral hygiene tips that you can follow at home.
As we all know, brushing your teeth at least twice a day is essential – after breakfast in the morning and before going to bed at night. Regular tooth brushing helps to prevent tooth decay and gum disease by reducing the number of bacteria and plaque around the teeth and gums.
To get the most from your brushing routine, spend at least 2 minutes brushing, ensuring that all areas are cleaned – the inside, outside, and biting surfaces of each tooth. The key is to aim the toothbrush bristles directly at the gum line, rather than the top of the tooth, as this is where plaque starts to form. Gently move the toothbrush in a circular motion, which will clean away as much plaque from the gums as possible.
Use fluoride toothpaste
When it comes to choosing the toothpaste for your oral hygiene make sure it contains fluoride. Fluoride strengthens the enamel on your teeth, which is the protective surface that helps resist the acids that lead to tooth decay.
Limit sugar intake
Try to reduce or eliminate the amount of sugary food and fizzy drinks you eat and drink. Sugar converts to acid inside your mouth and can dissolve the minerals in tooth enamel, causing decay and eventually holes (cavities). Acidic foods and drinks can also cause tooth erosion which causes tooth sensitivity, discolouration and cracks over time.
Getting Professional Cleanings
While your own everyday habits are crucial to your overall oral health, it’s important to visit your dentist twice a year for a check-up and clean. During a routine dental examination, a hygienist will clean the teeth and remove plaque and hardened tartar. A check-up and clean can help keep your teeth and gums healthy as well as help detect oral issues early on.