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Not just your smile but your overall health depends upon your dental care habits such as brushing and flossing your mouth everyday. Failing to maintain proper dental care and oral hygiene can lead to a plethora of dental and oral diseases. Here are some tips to maintain good oral health and prevent diseases such as gum disease, oral cancer or a horrible breath.
You should brush your teeth everyday in the morning as soon as you get up from your bed and in the night before you hit your bed. When you are brushing your teeth, don't rush. Take time to thoroughly clean your teeth. Don't exert too much pressure while brushing your teeth as it may damage your enamel. In the night, if you have had acidic drink or food such as grapefruit or soda water, don't brush your teeth immediately.
When you brush your teeth you should also clean your tongue using either your toothbrush or tongue scraper. Use fluoride toothpaste and a soft bristle toothbrush to clean your mouth efficiently and comfortably. Regularly brushing your teeth will minimise the chance of plaque formation. Wash and clean your toothbrush and tongue scraper immediately after washing your mouth. Regularly replace your toothbrush as soon as bristle flay or become irregular.
Toothbrushes are excellent at cleaning the surface of the teeth. However they cannot reach everywhere inside your mouth such as spaces between the teeth. But a good flossing helps you get rid of food residue stuck between the teeth. You should regularly floss your teeth at least once a day.
So, what is flossing? It is the practice of using a thin filament or plastic wire directly as shown in the illustration above or on a device to remove food and dental plagues from between the teeth in areas a toothbrush does not reach. Without regular flossing, buildup of plagues between the teeth is a common cause of gum disease (gingivitis) and holes in teeth (caries). Daily flossing helps to prevent these conditions from developing. Do not use the wooden toothpicks as flossing device. They tend to traumatise the gums and cause gum disease. They may also carry germs with reuse and cause gum disease.
Stay away from soda, alcohol and tobacco
Drinks and products such as soda, alcohol and tobacco have damaging effects on teeth. Avoiding them completely or minimising their use can save you from periodontal complications like oral cancer. Also the food that are generally taken to mask the smell of alcohol or tobacco, such as coffee, tea and sweet can further damage the teeth. Most fizzy drinks such as soda contain phosphorus which is an important mineral for our body and is good for bone health. But excess of phosphorus has a bad effect on our body. Too much of phosphorus intake depletes the calcium level in the body, leading to tooth decay and gum diseases.
Along with doing everything that we have mentioned above, you should also regularly visit a dentist near your place. Even after taking all the precautions you cannot entirely rule out the possibility of gum diseases and tooth decay. Moreover there are dental problems you may not be able to identify on our own. Visiting your dentist regularly for oral check up and teeth cleaning will help your dentist identify teeth and gum diseases at an early stage when it can be easily cured.
Mouthwash is important for good oral health. Many people don't use mouthwash because either they considered it not important or they simply don't know how to use it. Mouthwash helps to reduce the amount of acid in the mouth. Prolonged acidic environment in the mouth can damage the enamel and teeth. Mouthwash is even more important for children and older people who may not be able to brush and floss properly.
Are there health risks to using mouthwash?
There have been claims that mouthwashes containing alcohol can have adverse health effects such as increased risk of oral cancer. But this has not been proven conclusively. However, alcohol free mouthwashes are available in pharmacies and these can be tried in place of alcohol containing mouthwashes. Note that home prepared salt in warm water can be a cheap and effective mouthwash especially after any oral surgery or whenever there is gum disease or mouth ulcer.
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