The new year is upon us. Do you want to improve your oral and overall health in 2022? Here are 5 habits that can help you maintain a healthy oral routine throughout this next year:
#1 Brush your teeth at least 2x each day.
Brush your teeth at least twice a day (especially before going to bed at night).
Brushing and flossing help control the plaque and bacteria that cause dental disease. Plaque is a film of food debris, bacteria, and saliva that sticks to the teeth and gums. The bacteria in plaque convert certain food particles into acids that cause tooth decay. Also, if plaque is not removed, it turns into calculus (tartar). If plaque and calculus are not removed, they begin to destroy the gums and bone, causing periodontal (gum) disease. Plaque formation and growth is continuous and can only be controlled by regular brushing, flossing, and the use of other dental aids.
#2 Use the correct toothbrush type.
Choose an ADA approved soft bristle brush and toothpaste. Electric toothbrushes are also recommended. They are easy to use and can remove plaque efficiently. Simply place the bristles of the electric brush on your gums and teeth and allow the brush to do its job, several teeth at a time. #3 Floss on a daily basis.
Daily flossing is the best way to clean between the teeth and under the gumline. Flossing not only helps clean these spaces, it disrupts plaque colonies from building up, preventing damage to the gums, teeth, and bone. #4 Don't forget to rinse out your mouth.
It is important to rinse your mouth with water after brushing, and also after meals if you are unable to brush. If you are using an over-the-counter product for rinsing, it’s a good idea to consult with your dentist or dental hygienist on its appropriateness for you.
#5 Schedule your bi-annual dental check-ups.
Regular dental exams and cleaning visits are essential in preventing dental problems and maintaining the health of your teeth and gums. At these visits, your teeth are cleaned and checked for cavities. Additionally, there are many other things that are checked and monitored to help detect, prevent, and maintain your dental health.
These include: Medical History Review; Examination of X-Rays; Oral Cancer Screening; Gum Disease Evaluation; Examination of Tooth Decay; Examination of Existing Restorations; Removal of Calculus; Removal of Plaque; Teeth Polishing; Review Dietary Habits.
For these reasons, you should have your teeth checked and cleaned at least twice a year, though your dentist or dental hygienist may recommend more frequent visits.