Who doesn’t want a whiter, brighter, healthier smile?
A better smile gives your confidence a nice boost while helping you put your best foot forward in your interactions and relationships.
It’s not surprising why many are willing to go to great lengths just to whiten their teeth – from using DIY whitening products to booking cosmetic dentistry procedures.
But while teeth whitening products and cosmetic dentistry can help, there’s a lot you can do on your own to improve your oral health. Take a look at these four simple tips that can get you that brighter smile you’ve always wanted.
See Your Dentist At Least Twice A Year
The standard advice of seeing the dentist at least twice a year is not a random recommendation. Matter of fact, the twice-a-year visit may just be the minimum effective dose.
Some dental health experts even tell adults to see their dentist for a check-up every 90 days, and for a long list of good reasons.
For starters, professional teeth cleaning sessions get rid of the bad bacteria residing on the teeth. When left unchecked, the bad bacteria can cause plaque which then hardens and turns into tartar. This can lead to enamel erosion, gum disease, and a host of other dental health problems.
After a thorough cleaning, however, plaque starts to recolonize within 24 to 48 hours.
Even an exceptional oral care regimen isn’t going to stop it. And once the plaque latches on the teeth and turns into an insoluble compound, ordinary brushing won’t cut it and you’d need the expertise and tools of a hygienist.
So have your teeth checked and cleaned on a regular basis. Doing so not only gets rid of hard-to-remove plaque and tartar.
More important, regular check-ups can help spot the signs of decay, cavities, and other more serious problems like oral cancer, giving you and your dentist enough time to find the right treatment.
Maintain Good Oral Health Habits
Good oral health habits can go a long way in giving you a healthier, whiter, and prettier smile.
Brush your teeth three times a day (and make sure to give it time). Each brushing session should take at least two minutes to guarantee thorough cleaning.
A good suggestion is to divide the mouth into four sections and spend about 30 seconds on each. You may also consider using electric toothbrushes with built-in timers to make sure you’re not falling short.
Don’t forget your tongue when brushing the teeth. The tongue is a breeding ground for over 40,000 bacteria. Not all of them are beneficial, and some can even cause stinky breath and discoloration.
To scrape the harmful microorganisms from the tongue, use a brush with soft bristles and long strokes starting at the back of the tongue. And don’t forget to rinse the brush after every stroke to prevent redepositing bacteria in the mouth.
And one last brushing tip: replace your toothbrush after three to four months of daily use. If you’re in doubt, survey the bristles. If they look frayed, bent, or worn down, the toothbrush isn’t cleaning your teeth properly.
Go For Healthy Foods And Swish Water For 30 Seconds After Eating
You are what you eat. And this holds true not just in the physical fitness department but in oral health, too. Substitute sugary candies and soda with healthier options.
If you love cheese (and who doesn’t?), you are on the right track.
A study published in General Dentistry journal in 2013 found that cheese raised the pH in the mouth, translating to lower risk of tooth decay. Moreover, cheese is known for its high calcium and protein content, which strengthen the enamel.
Yogurt, just like cheese, is also packed with calcium and protein.
But it has the added benefits of probiotics. The friendly bacteria control the population of bad bacteria in the gums, which causes cavities, bad breath, and other oral health problems.
Want to add yogurt to your daily diet? Stick to the plain, unsweetened variety to enjoy its teeth and gum-strengthening benefits – without feeding bad bacteria which snack on sugar for energy.
And of course, let’s not forget the leafy greens!
Kale, spinach, broccoli, and their cousins are great sources of vitamins, minerals, and calcium, and they’re low on calories, too. Even better, green leafy vegetables also have folic acid, which can treat gum disease, especially in pregnant women.
Listing all of the healthy foods that benefit the teeth and gums in this post is impossible. Whatever you eat, however, you don’t want tiny bits and pieces of food getting stuck in the small spaces between your teeth. The fix? Swish water for 30 seconds immediately after eating.
Keep Tabs Of Your Coffee And Tea Consumption
Coffee and tea are two of the most popular drinks around the world. The average coffee drinker in the United States consumes 3.2 cups of coffee daily, while tea is found in almost 80% of all households in the country.
And why not? Both are excellent “pick me up” beverages thanks to their high caffeine content. Not to mention coffee and tea are packed with antioxidants that boost brain health and fitness while lowering the risk of certain types of cancers.
But do you know what else coffee and tea do?
Raise acid levels, and this is bad news for your teeth as it can weaken the enamel. And since both drinks are often consumed slowly, increased acid levels may remain for extended periods of time and raise the danger of enamel breakdown.
So keep tabs of your coffee and tea consumption. Be careful not to go over the recommended daily consumption – two to three cups of tea and three to five cups of coffee depending on your health, sleep patterns, and a host of other factors.
Consider adding cream or milk, too. Doing so changes the chemistry of the beverage and minimizes the risk of sticking and staining the surface of the teeth.
Flash Your Brighter Healthier Smile And Be Proud Of It!
Getting a brighter, healthier smile is a long-term goal. And we’ve just looked at four simple tips that will take you there.
See your dentist twice a year at the very least. Maintain good oral health habits like brushing three times a day. Replace sugary foods with healthier options. And last but not the least, keep tabs of your coffee and tea consumption.
Are you ready to flash a smile you can be proud of?