Most people tend to believe that just having straight teeth or a bright smile is a sign of a healthy mouth. While this is necessarily true, you can’t ignore the health of your gums. Even if you’re cavity-free and have the whitest teeth in town, that doesn’t mean that you’re already immune to certain gum diseases. Since it’s not commonly visible in the initial stages, most people have no idea that there is something wrong with their gums. Well, gum problems can drastically affect your teeth in the form of tooth decay or even worse, loss of teeth. Which is why it’s so essential to take good care of your gums.
Bacteria are less likely to stick to on clean, smooth teeth. However, if bacteria are not removed through daily brushing and flossing, plaque can start to build up on your teeth, and the bacteria will infect not only your teeth but also your gums. Eventually, the gum tissue and bone that supports your teeth can become loose, fall out and have to be removed by a dentist. If you want to start early and keep your gums pink and healthy, here are important ways to follow.
#1 Use a Good Toothbrush
As recommended, use a toothbrush with soft and round bristles, so that it does not hurt your gums while you’re brushing. You can also use crisscross bristles to help reach tiny spaces and remove food particles that are stuck in between your teeth. They also contribute to brush away plaque that’s stubbornly stuck on your teeth, which helps eliminate bacteria growth. A good quality toothbrush may cost a bit more than regular ones, but it’ll provide you with much better results for your teeth.
However, the bristles on your toothbrush can wear, making them less effective at removing plaque from your gums and teeth. Always make sure to change your toothbrush every three months or so. If you suddenly have a cold, flu, or any other mouth infection, keep in mind to change your toothbrush right away to prevent passing on the disease.
#2 Brush at Least Twice a Day
Remember to brush your teeth at least twice a day. Once after you wake up, and once before you sleep. However, most of us know we should, but we don’t usually do it. While brushing once a day is okay, doing this for a prolonged period may lead to the buildup of plaque and other infections.
Some people will go the extra mile with cleaning their teeth right after every meal. Though it’s not something that’s required to do, it is an essential way to keep bacteria away. Perhaps you may consider adjusting to brushing your teeth every after meal to make it more feasible. Remember to brush your teeth at least once in the morning and the evening for two minutes each. Brush along your gum line, as well as your tongue too to reduce the number of bacteria that live in these particular areas.
#3 Floss Regularly
Flossing should be a regular habit in every person’s’ healthy oral care routine. Daily flossing helps prevent tartar buildup, tooth decay, and certain gum diseases. It takes you barely a few minutes to floss properly, and the benefits you get are long lasting. Just make sure to floss correctly and with proper care.
Flossing is still the most efficient way to remove any food particles and plaque in between your teeth, which can irritate your gums if not removed properly. Be sure to floss each tooth from each side at least once a day to help remove plaque and food particles that a regular toothbrush can’t reach. It doesn’t matter what time you floss. Remember to do it at night, in the morning, or if you’re in the mood, you can do it every after meal.
#4 Rinse with Antiseptic Mouthwash
Mouthwash has a significant role in oral hygiene because our teeth make up only a small portion of our mouth. Don’t forget the area near our throat, our palate, tongue, and gums, which are usually overlooked during brushing. You want to eliminate all the bacteria in your mouth thoroughly, so that plaque cannot form and produce signs of infection.
After every brushing, rinse your mouth with antiseptic mouthwash to flush away the remaining bacteria. Antiseptic mouthwashes are great at temporarily reducing some of the harmful bacteria that can cause mild gum disease and plaque. In fact, you can buy antiseptic mouthwashes in any drugstore without the need of a prescription. You can also use an alcohol-free mouthwash. However, alcohol can dry out the inside of your mouth making it harder to flush away the bacteria.
#5 Avoid Smoking
Smoking has consistently been linked to being the primary cause of gum disease. There are a lot of people who usually ignore the signs of gum disease and leave it be. If left untreated, periodontal disease will take over. The pockets between your teeth and gums can grow deeper, allowing more bacteria to come in which can destroy tissue and other supporting bones. As a result, the gums in your mouth can shrink making your teeth look a bit longer. Without treatment, your teeth may become painful, loose and even fall out.
Tobacco use, whether chewing or smoking, contributes to an overwhelming number of cases of tissue damage in the mouth. If you actually want to keep healthy teeth and gums, it’s important to avoid smoking as early as possible.
Visit Your Dentist Regularly
It’s always a great idea to go for a dental checkup once every six months because then you can address any dental issues with your teeth or gums before it’s too late. Going for a dental checkup can get your teeth cleaned and fixed, which makes it harder for plaque to form. In fact, getting regular checkups can make it easier for you to maintain a good oral hygiene.
Having regular dental check-ups can actually track the early signs of gum disease and stop it from spreading inside your mouth before it gets any worse. Your dentist will check on the condition of your mouth and may clean your teeth and gums if necessary, reducing your chances of getting dental problems in the future. The gums may not be as prominent as teeth, but they serve as an important part in your mouth. Here at My Smile Orthodontics, we improve your gum health and ensure that you have a lovely, healthy smile that you can be proud of.