We all want to keep our teeth healthy and beautiful, but sometimes we may be doing things we don’t even realize are bad for our teeth, or we may struggle to complete oral hygiene tasks that we know are good for us.
If you struggle with oral hygiene and are concerned for your oral health, our team at West Lakes Dentistry is here to help! Schedule an appointment to discuss any questions or concerns. We want to help you keep your teeth, gums, and mouth in the best health possible.
1. Switch Your Gum
Chewing gum can actually be beneficial for your oral health, but only if it’s sugar-free. If your chewing gum contains sugar, it has many of the same risks any other sugary food has: the bacteria in your mouth eat the sugar, allowing them to grow and damage your teeth.
Sugar-free gum stimulates saliva flow, which helps to dilute the acids produced by the bacteria on your teeth. In the long term, gum can prevent tooth decay. So don’t worry about ditching the gum completely. Just make sure it’s sugar-free, and you’re good to go.
2. Try Sealants
Your teeth are covered with hard enamel to protect the sensitive roots inside. However, that enamel is not always a match for the bacteria in your mouth. Plaque and other buildups can cause tooth decay, leading to cavities, gum disease, and other problems. For the most part, regular brushing and flossing help keep these problems at bay.
However, the tops of your molars have lots of crevices that are difficult to clean. To prevent bacteria buildup in these grooves, you should consider getting a sealant treatment at your dentist’s office. Sealants partially fill in the crevices in your molars and are very effective at preventing cavities in those difficult-to-reach areas.
3. Make Flossing Work For You
Flossing is a hard habit to get into. Many people aspire to floss but fall short in their day-to-day lives. One reason for this may be that floss is sometimes difficult or uncomfortable to use. It can be hard to hold the floss tightly enough without cutting off circulation to your fingers or hurting your skin.
Tools that clean between your teeth are called interdental cleaners. There are a variety of interdental cleaners besides floss, including dental picks or floss picks, small brushes, and water or air flossers.
Some people feel that floss is their only option, but you should feel free to use whatever type of interdental cleaner works best for you. Make sure to look for the ADA seal of approval on whatever product you’re using. Anything with that seal is proven safe and effective.
4. Take Advantage of Fluoride Treatments
Most toothpastes contain fluoride, but you can also get fluoride treatments at the dentist’s office! Fluoride strengthens your teeth and makes them more decay-resistant. These treatments only take a few minutes every six months to a year, so this is a great way to improve your oral hygiene without adding a ton of extra work to your daily routine.
Fluoride can be applied professionally using a foam, gel, or rinse. After application, you may need to wait an hour or so before eating or drinking, so if you’re planning to get a fluoride treatment, make sure you get enough to eat ahead of time.
For Any Questions or Concerns About Oral Health, Call West Lakes Dentistry
Our professional and caring staff is only a phone call away. We are happy to offer advice and answer any questions you have about your oral health. Schedule appointments with our wonderful dentists to address any dental health concerns.