You and your family deserve to implement the best dental care practices around!
In our practice or across the miles, our favorite thing to do is know we are caring for your smiles and overall health.
Whether it’s been a while since you’ve seen the dentist or you just want to brush up on your dental health routine, know that everything you do to improve your dental health also improves your immune system—which has never been more important than now!
Fortunately, there are tons of ways you can take care of your teeth and gums right at home! In fact, this is a great time to practice excellent at-home dental care.
How Dental Health Improves Your Immune System
Did you know your dental health can have an impact on your immune system?
Plaque makes a nice home for all sorts of bacteria, which are no friend to the immune system. When this bacteria builds up, our gums become inflamed.
Inflammation sends signals to the white blood cells that aid our immune system in attacking bacteria and other harmful chemicals. In other words, if you have inflammation in your gums, your immune system is going to work to fight against the bacteria in your mouth. In the meantime, other parts of the body are more vulnerable to bacteria and viruses.
Sometimes this bacteria can spread beyond your mouth. Your mouth is a gateway to your respiratory and digestive tract, and when you’ve got a lot of bacteria in your mouth, it can travel and infect other important organs. Once again, your immune system will have to spend its time fighting against a perfectly preventable source of inflammation!
Best Dental Care Tips
Dental health encourages more than just a beautiful smile and nice-smelling breath. It also allows your immune system to focus on key areas of your body that fight against illness! These tips will help you maintain healthy teeth and gums until you can get back in the dentist’s chair.
1. Brush the right way.
Does your toothpaste have a fluoride base? Are you brushing twice a day for two minutes at a time? Are you getting into all those nooks and crannies?
Many of us don’t realize that even though we’re brushing, we’re not getting all of the benefits. Make sure you’re using a dentist-recommended fluoride toothpaste and are changing your toothbrush at least once every three months. When you brush, get the fronts and backs of every tooth by moving in a circular motion, and don’t forget to brush your tongue!
2. Don’t underestimate the power of flossing.
If you’ve skipped flossing in the past, now is the time to start. Try to floss at least once a day, and make sure to run the floss between each tooth. Rather than inserting the floss straight down and straight back up, run the floss along the sides of both of the teeth it is threaded between.
Floss removes the food particles and plaque that toothbrushes can’t quite reach!
3. Introduce complete-care mouthwash into your routine.
Pick up a bottle of ADA-approved mouthwash for plaque and gingivitis control. These include name brands, such as Listerine, as well as certain generic versions, such as CVS’s antiseptic mouthrinse. Mouthwash can get into any dental sockets or other problem areas you may have and rinse out the bacteria hiding there!
4. Cut down on starch and sugar.
Starch and sugar have a tendency to coat the teeth, leaving behind a great deal of plaque. They’re also both perpetrators of inflammation! Try to limit your intake of foods that are high in processed starch or sugar for the time being, including white bread and candy.
Look for better alternatives. Whole wheat breads and pastas make a great substitute, and whole fruits can help curb that craving for a sugary treat!
5. Eat colorfully.
A low-sugar, low-carb diet doesn’t have to be boring. Just fill your plate with colorful foods! This includes any veggies or fruits you enjoy—the more, the merrier!
Eating colorfully ensures your body is getting all of the vitamins and minerals it needs to self-regulate. When you eat raw, crunchy veggies, you get the added plaque-scraping bonus!
6. Stay hydrated.
A mouth that isn’t producing enough saliva is one that is more at risk for tooth decay. Make sure you’re drinking enough water, preferably at least eight glasses a day, so your mouth can generate enough saliva to keep your teeth safe and healthy!
7. Take note of trouble areas.
If you feel a bit of sensitivity or think you might have a small cavity setting in, make sure to treat that trouble area with extra care. It may be difficult to seek treatment at the moment, but you can keep those trouble areas from getting worse!
If you have any issues with your teeth, it’s a good idea to switch to a no-sugar diet. You may also want to add a third tooth brushing session or use mouthwash after lunch just to make sure the area is clear of any plaque or food particles.
Pay attention to dental emergencies.
As long as you adhere to our best dental care practices at home, your dentist will be thrilled with your dental health the next time you go in for a checkup!
However, we know dental emergencies do happen, which is why we’re still available for emergency dental treatment. If you or a family member is experiencing severe oral pain or excessive bleeding or chips or cracks a tooth, contact us right away. Use the phone number on our contact page to call your dentist’s office, and we’ll give you the treatment you need ASAP!