Caring for your teeth is a long journey that starts the moment your first tooth pops through your gum as an infant. Most of us are taught the basics for caring for our teeth when we are young, but, as you age, you may begin to wonder if the methods you are using to care for your teeth are enough to keep them healthy for a lifetime.
Good dental hygiene is important not only for the health of your mouth but also for your overall body; new research indicates that gum disease increases the risk for heart disease and other ailments. Here are four ways to keep your teeth healthy and strong at any age.
Change Your Toothbrush Every Three Months
Experts recommend changing your toothbrush every 3 months and for good reason. Practo explains that with every use, the sturdy bristles of your toothbrush become frayed and worn down, making it easier for bacteria to grow, which can result in tooth and gum infections. Also, research shows that new toothbrushes are more effective in removing plaque than toothbrushes that have been used frequently.
Celery and Carrots Are Your Friends
Raw, crunchy foods like celery and carrots, are great additions to your dental routine. North Austin Dentists explains that munching on celery and carrots can be as good as tooth brushing for removing plaque from your teeth. The chewing action also stimulates the gums, promoting increased blood flow, which contributes to the overall health of the gums. Crunchy fruits can also help with removing food particles from your mouth.
Make Sure to Use Fluoride
Fluoride helps to strengthen tooth enamel and prevent tooth decay. It has been found to be such an important aspect of healthy teeth that most U.S. cities have fluoridated water. If your water isn’t fluoridated, make an appointment to speak with your dentist about having a fluoride treatment in-office or getting a fluoride rinse.
Rinse or Chew Gum After Meals
Rinsing your mouth or chewing gum after meals is an easy way to help keep your teeth healthy and clean. Using a rinse that’s designed to fight bacteria assists in the prevention of tooth decay, and chewing sugar-free gum after meals prompts an increase in saliva that acts as a natural rinse to wash away residual food and bacteria. Ameritas explains that rinsing after eating can help improve saliva production, but make sure not to brush your teeth immediately after a meal because that can make them more susceptible to acids.
Keeping your teeth healthy and strong has long-lasting implications on your dental and overall health. By practicing good dental hygiene and making regular visits to the dentist, you can make sure that your teeth will stand the test of time.
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