During the past two decades, studies have supported the link between oral health and heart disease. However, the scope has now widened to show that poor oral health can worsen several chronic diseases and possibly interfere with the effective treatment of many health conditions. Medical and dental professionals agree that optimal oral health is essential to your overall health and well-being.
To help maintain healthy teeth and gums, schedule an appointment at Trident Dental for a comprehensive oral examination and professional teeth cleaning.
The best way to ensure oral health is to prevent dental plaque buildup. Plaque accumulation is responsible for tooth decay, gingivitis, and halitosis. Below are seven steps you can take to improve your oral hygiene routine.
1. Brush Twice Daily
The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends brushing your teeth twice daily. While cavities typically form slowly, the acids produced by dental plaque can begin removing minerals from tooth enamel long before cavity detection. Brushing twice daily protects enamel from long-term exposure to these harmful acids.
2. Brush For Two Minutes
To adequately remove plaque from all teeth surfaces requires about two minutes of brushing, according to the ADA. However, most people brush for forty-five seconds. Research shows that increasing your brushing time to two minutes would provide significant oral health benefits.
3. Brush Gently Using A Soft-Bristled Toothbrush
Whether you choose a manual or electric toothbrush, soft bristles and gentle pressure protect enamel and gums from damage. Hard bristles or excessive pressure can remove gums that cover your roots. Additionally, you can also brush notches into your teeth that are prone to develop cavities.
4. Brush Using A Fluoride Toothpaste
The ADA acknowledges that there is a lot of misinformation about fluoride in the media. However, the ADA and most dental professionals recommend fluoride toothpaste to help remove plaque and strengthen tooth enamel.
5. Change Your Toothbrush Regularly
The ADA recommends changing toothbrushes every 3-4 months. However, you may need to change more frequently if you notice frayed, missing, or broken bristles. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) also recommends not sharing toothbrushes and storing them so they can air dry.
6. Floss Daily
According to some estimates, only about 40% of people floss daily. Unfortunately, when you do not floss each day, you miss removing plaque from 40% of your tooth surfaces. Using floss, interdental brushes, or a water flosser can clean between your teeth that brushing cannot reach. Therefore, it is critical to floss correctly and not miss any surfaces to avoid gum inflammation.
7. Eat A Healthy Diet That Limits Sugar Consumption
Foods that benefit your overall health also help keep your teeth and gums healthy. Adding sugar to your diet not only increases your risk of dying from heart disease, but it also contributes to tooth decay. The ADA recommends drinking plenty of water and eating a balanced diet of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and other healthy foods.
Trident Dental provides comprehensive oral exams and professional teeth cleaning to help you maintain optimal oral hygiene and health.