Good oral hygiene is essential to our oral and overall health. Oral health is not just about brushing your teeth twice a day. It's also about maintaining good oral health habits, such as brushing your teeth and tongue regularly, eating a balanced diet, and visiting the dentist every six months. And there are some habits that should be avoided to maintain good oral health. Here are some of them.
Cigarettes are highly acidic and contain chemicals that attack and discolor your teeth. They also increase the risk of gum disease by 4-5 times. The nicotine in cigarettes can also decrease blood flow in the gums and cause gum recession. Cigarette smoke is also a risk factor for oral cancer. Tobacco use is the leading cause of preventable death in the United States. Tobacco kills over 400,000 people each year in the U.S. alone.
Tobacco users are also more likely to have poorer oral health compared to non-users. For example, smokers are three times as likely to suffer from severe periodontitis than non-smokers. Smokers also face an increased risk of losing their teeth at a younger age. If you are a tobacco user and want to quit, talk to your doctor or dentist about the options available to help you quit. Quitting at any age has benefits for your health. If you smoke or use tobacco products, it is important that you visit your dentist for regular cleanings to help prevent cavities, periodontal disease, and other oral issues associated with tobacco use. You may also benefit from having sealants applied to your back teeth to prevent decay.
Many people don't realize that brushing your teeth too vigorously can seriously damage your enamel! This can expose the sensitive layer of your tooth to the bacteria-filled environment in your mouth. This can cause tooth decay and gum disease. So, the best thing to do is to brush your teeth gently using a soft-bristled toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste. Your toothbrush should have soft bristles and be changed every three to four months or when it appears worn. You should also replace your toothbrush after you've recovered from an illness to reduce the risk of reinfection. When it's time to get a new brush, consider investing in an electric toothbrush. These brushes do most of the work for you, and they can help clean hard-to-reach places more effectively. Pay close attention to the areas around the back of your mouth, where plaque can easily build up.
Don't forget to floss daily as well! Flossing helps to remove food particles from between teeth and along the gum line. It also keeps gum tissue healthy by stimulating blood flow and clearing out dead cells and debris from the arteries. If you aren't currently flossing every day, then start now! It only takes a few minutes a day to keep your smile clean and healthy.
Teeth grinding can be a sign that there is an underlying problem, such as sleep apnea or stress. It can also be caused by misaligned teeth or a missing tooth. If left untreated, teeth grinding can eventually wear down your teeth and damage them. You may experience jaw pain, headaches, or neck pain that may only be relieved by sleeping. You may also find that you grind your teeth more when you sleep because you are not consciously aware of your actions. It's recommended that you discuss your grinding habits with a dental professional so they can create a treatment plan for you.
Although a dentist may not be able to stop this habit altogether, they can provide you with a custom mouth guard that can lessen the pressure put on your teeth. Mouth guards are designed to protect the teeth from clenching and grinding as well as from damage caused by the bite.
Using teeth as a tool to pry open containers or bottles, crack nuts, and bite off plastic packaging is a habit that can damage your teeth and gums. Not only can it cause severe dental damage, but it can also be painful and cause infection as well. It can even result in tooth loss! When a tooth is damaged like this, getting the appropriate dental treatments is essential to avoid further damage and long-term issues. Instead, take advantage of the right tools to get the job done and protect your dental health in the process. Keep items like scissors, bottle openers, nutcrackers, and other common household tools in places you'll remember to use them instead of your teeth.
If you are guilty of damaging your teeth by using it as a tool, you should visit our office for regular cleanings and checkups. It's important that we diagnose any issues, such as cavities, as soon as possible so we can treat them before they become larger problems.
We absolutely cannot stress this enough – regular visits to the dentist are the key to good oral health! Scheduling checkups every six months allows your dentist to detect any small problems that may become bigger problems down the line if left untreated. So don't skip those appointments! Your smile will thank you for it.
To learn more, visit Dental Health PC at 869 NW 23rd Street, Corvallis, OR 97330. Call us at (541) 757 1829 to book an appointment. We will be happy to help you further.