It’s that time of year again! It’s the time for resolutions and the new and improved you. A lot us like to think of the New Year as a time to reflect and aim towards becoming the best version of ourselves. However, everyone is different so everyone sets different goals. But, everyone has teeth (well, most everyone) so everyone can benefit from following these tips for healthier teeth in 2015.
1. Brush your teeth (DUH!)
Okay, so this one should go without saying but we have to state the obvious anyways. It’s just something you’re going to have to deal with hearing from your dentist for the rest of your life! You might be thinking, “I already do that one.” In that case, very good! But are you brushing properly? You would be amazed by how many of our patients brush too aggressively or may be getting cavities because they aren’t brushing the right way. Let 2015 be the year that you brush up on brushing. A good tip to get you started is bringing your toothbrush to your next dental cleaning and asking your hygienist watch you brush. Ask her what you could be doing better.
2. Get Fancy
Looking to spice things up in the oral hygiene department? Maybe it’s time to buy a new fancy electric toothbrush. Patients of mine often ask me if those things really work or if they are worth the money. My response is always the same, “That depends on you.” In my opinion, if you do a good job with a manual toothbrush, you don’t need an electric toothbrush. The opposite of that is also true. If you don’t use a manual toothbrush properly then you probably won’t use an electric toothbrush properly. It just all depends on you. But one thing is certain, buying a new fancy toy, even if it is a toothbrush, has the potential to make brushing your teeth go from a “tolerable” task to “almost enjoyable.”
This is another no brainer and we really shouldn’t have to list it here. But take a moment, look at yourself in the mirror and try saying, “I floss everyday” with a straight face. Couldn’t do it? Don’t feel bad. You’re definitely not alone, many people are part of the “occasional flossing” club. Want to make a positive change for your health this year? Forget the diet pills, forget the exercise equipment, and start flossing. It will change your life. Look at the bright side, it’s not as time consuming as working out and you won’t get as sweaty!
4. Snack Smarter
This is another very important area. Cavities come from bacteria that live in your mouth. They eat the sugar that you eat and cause cavities. This is why dentists recommend eating less sugar. Another good tip is to snack quickly. If you are going to have sugary snack or beverage, it is better to finish it all in one sitting rather than snack on it continuously. Just about the worst thing that you could do would be to take a sip of a sugary drink every ten minutes. It is much better for your teeth if you finish it all at once. Using a straw can also help avoid straining the fronts of your teeth. If you are a chocolate lover, you might want to take a look at our last blog post: Dark Chocolate May Actually Be Good For Your Teeth
5. GO TO THE DENTIST!!
But seriously, this one is a must do. If you’ve been away from the dentist for a while, make 2015 the year that you make your triumphant return. It’s about more than just having healthy teeth. In our office, we screen every patient for signs of oral cancer. More research is coming out all the time connecting poor oral health to poor general health conditions, like heart disease. Come to the dentist, your mouth and heart will thank you.
Bonus: Try whitening
White teeth do not necessarily mean healthy teeth. But someone who takes the time to whiten their teeth tends to take better care of their pearly whites. And a beautiful white smile is always the perfect accessory!