TAKING CARE OF YOUR TEETH AT HOME MAY NOT BE YOUR FAVOURITE “CHORE” BUT IT’S GOING TO HELP MAINTAIN YOUR DENTAL HEALTH.
Developing good dental care habits will prevent cavities and gum disease from forming in your mouth.
Dr. James Scramstad of Straight Smiles in Kelowna, B.C. believes that good habits that are formed from a young age will stick with a client forever. Here are some of the simplest habits he recommends you start today.
1. BRUSH YOUR TEETH MULTIPLE TIMES A DAY
It’s important to brush thoroughly, at least twice a day, once in the morning and once at night before going to bed. Additionally to that, if you have braces or Invisalign aligners, you should brush your teeth after every meal. We know it’s not the coolest thing to do during lunch break at school, but your teeth will thank you if you do it. Your boyfriend or girlfriend will probably thank you too because the food stuck in your braces will be gone. No one wants food stuck in their teeth!
We don’t hate flossing our teeth and you shouldn’t hate it either. Yes, it can seem a bit tedious, but flossing really does benefit your oral health.
Flossing loosens up plaque (a film of bacteria) that builds on and between your teeth. If the plaque stays between or on your teeth, you risk forming cavities and developing gum disease. Instead of that, spend a couple of minutes a day flossing between your teeth to remove that gunk.
3. BRUSH YOUR TONGUE
Yes, you read that correctly. It’s extremely important to brush your tongue during your teeth cleaning routine. If you’re not, you’re probably doing your mouth a disservice. There is bacteria living on your tongue and if you’re not regularly cleaning it, you will experience bad breath and bad dental health.
You can use your toothbrush to clean your tongue, or if you want to get fancy, stores sell tongue cleaners that work really well.
4. USE YOUR WATERPIK
All of our braces patients receive a new Waterpik on the day you get your braces. This is like a mini-powersprayer for your teeth! It is super cool and will help you keep your teeth and braces sparkling clean. A good place to use it is in the shower – just make sure you dry the waterpik after each use (and don’t leave it in the shower, please)
5. KEEP YOUR EQUIPMENT CLEAN
Another effortless way to maintain good dental care habits is by keeping your equipment clean. Always rinse your toothbrush with water after brushing. Store your toothbrush in an upright position in a holder.
If you cover your toothbrush every day, you might not want to anymore. Routinely covering your toothbrush (especially right after brushing) can encourage the growth of bacteria, mold and yeast.
So, let that toothbrush air dry and keep it out of its cover!
6. AVOID TOBACCO
Say no to the peer pressure to smoke, it will be a big favour to your teeth and overall health. Smoking causes oral cancer and periodontal complications. Periodontal complications include periodontitis (where the tissue that supports teeth is affected), including gum abscesses (painful collections of pus) and increased damage to the tissue that connects the tooth to the jaws. It can also discolour your braces or aligners, and will permanently affect your oral health.
To avoid having any of these problems, say no to smoking.
7. VISIT Straight Smiles REGULARLY
You should visit Dr. Scramstad at Straight Smiles regularly for your check-ups. During these check-ups, your braces may be tightened, you could be given new Invisalign aligners and Dr. Scramstad will look at your teeth and gums. If he sees anything out of the ordinary, he will let you know and give you solutions.
Additionally, it’s important to have your teeth cleaned twice a year to help your improved dental health habits.
If you’re looking for more tips on bettering your oral care, or if we’ve prompted you to book your braces/Invisalign checkup with Dr. Scramstad, visit our website, or call us today.