From the pain of tooth ache to the embarrassment of having a bad breath, there is unnecessary distress and embarrassment one goes through when dental care is not taken as seriously as it should. From the time a person is born and their teeth begin to show up, it is important that measures are taken to ensure that the teeth and gums stay health and last as long as they should. All of that entails good oral hygiene. This is even more critical when a person is older and no longer has the natural privilege of having a tooth grow again when it is lost. Beyond teeth, there are several other things that could make life a little more painful and like has already been stated, going through such painful experiences is not necessary at all. You simply need to know what good oral hygiene is all about and put the following information to practice. Lets start by looking at a number of things you should take special note of as far as keeping your teeth healthy or upholding good oral hygiene is concerned.
A better timing for brushing your teeth
Most people are told from the time they are able to reason and hold a toothbrush to brush their teeth every morning before breakfast. That seems logical until the day you find out it is not helping you keep healthy teeth and gums. The timing for brushing one’s teeth before retiring to bed is usually after supper and that is what should be applied in the morning. Brush after breakfast in the morning. It it necessary for healthy teeth and gums and makes for better oral hygiene. Why so? You may ask.
What we aim to accomplish when we brush is take off food particles from the mouth which will be detrimental if left for a long time and to keep one’s breath fresh. But brushing before breakfast does not serve this purpose, especially for those who brush before going to bed. The is no significant reason why you should brush before breakfast if you did so before going to be. It will be wiser to brush after breakfast so that you do away with every food particle that may be left from the first meal of the day.
If for some reason you cannot brush after breakfast, then at least rinse with a mouth wash before stepping out of the house. You are going to spend quite some time at work and the time span between when you brush in the morning and when you do in the night is long enough to accommodate bacterial activities and promote infections. If it is possible, brush immediately after each meal or at least use a mouth wash to exercise good oral hygiene. It is an effective way to keep bacterial in check and avoid mouth sores, tooth cavities and other such dental issues. It may not be convenient but it is necessary for keeping your teeth healthy.
Do not use your teeth as an opener or cracker
Yeah, you must have done it a few times and sincerely you do not really see what damage it has caused so far. Well, isn’t that the problem? Dental damages are usually not easy to detect from the onset. It will take some time and maybe pains before you realize what effect these “little things” are doing and how they keep you from maintaining healthy teeth and gums.
There are instruments made and sold for the purpose of opening beer bottles, cans or cracking nuts and other such hard shelled stuff. I am sure you already know that your teeth are not one of such instruments, so why use them. It is both irresponsible and harmful to open beer bottles with your teeth for example. If you do it frequently, you will realize with time that the particular teeth which holds the pressure slowly loose their hold to the root and begin to give way. It is even more inexcusable when you have the instruments made for such task at home or around and still resort to using your teeth to accomplish the task. Guess what? Those teeth were not designed or made to perform the functions of these instruments. If you loose one, there will be no natural replacement unless you are yet a toddler. And I doubt you are.
Maybe using your teeth as a nut cracker or opener has become a habit and you do not know how to go around it. Well, start by always having whatever tools you need for the job handy. Never take a can or bottle of beer before you have the required instrument to open it. At the end, this calls for exercise of self restraint.
Visit a Dentist often
Dental issues often go undetected until the day you either feel a pain or notice something unusual or contrary to healthy teeth and gums. But by then things would have already been getting out of control, causing pain and distress which could easily have been avoided. This makes it very necessary to see a dentist as often as possible to uphold good oral hygiene.
Making an appointment to see a dentist about every month is an important decision to take. You get to know if you have healthy teeth and gums and can be told ahead of time if something is wrong as well as what you need to do to handle the situation. Your dentist can also give you valuable advice on what foods are good for your teeth and which are not based on your dental condition.
Like they say it is better to prevent than cure. Take the precautions necessary to prevent more serious dental troubles that may cost more money and pain when aggravated.
Avoid excess sweets
Almost everything for eating in the stores has a little sugar these days and that is detrimental to keeping your teeth healthy. The inclusion of sugar in most things people eat is evident of the fact that there is a high demand for sugar. After all if no one was consuming these things, they would not be produced. In the morning there is a piece of cake or sugar for tea. Right after launch, you take desert, which is often heavily sweetened. Then before supper you took two to three candies or chocolate bars and your teeth have to deal with all of that.
The real harm is not done by sugar itself but by bacteria that feeds on sugar to create acids that help erode the tooth enamel.
Increase your calcium intake
Your intake of calcium has a great role to play as far as dental care is concerned. There is so much junk going around as food these days and many have actually lost focus with regards to healthy eating. It is important that people be reminded that food, no matter how much pleasure we derive from it, is first and foremost for the nourishment of the body. Consequently, in deciding what to eat, every other factor should be considered secondary. Keeping your teeth healthy requires eating the right thing. Don’t eat things just because you are hungry or because you want to derive the pleasure of eating.
That said, eating food that provides the necessary nutrients to build one’s dentition and promote oral health is an important step towards dental care which so many are taking for granted. You should know what foods around you or in the grocery stores are rich in calcium and include them in your diet as often as possible.
Consider HOW you brush
Regularly brushing your teeth will not do a lot of good if you are not doing it the right way. The human dentition is designed in such a way that care must be taken not just to brush often but to brush well. In fact, brushing well is more important than brushing often. So instead of brushing three times a day and doing it the wrong way, it would be preferable you brush two times a day and do it the right way.
The Right way is to brush from up to down and sideways. However, brushing from up to down should be preferred over brushing sideways. When you brush, spend more time moving the brush from up to down so that the brush strokes effectively move though the tiny gaps between teeth and clean them. That is where most of the food particles get stock and also where you are most likely to start having problems with your gums.
Next, when you brush, don’t rush through the part where you have to brush your tongue. Issues like mouth odor and even sores are the result of tongue and gums which are neglected. Since the idea is to brush one’s teeth, people consciously brush their teeth effectively and either do not clean their gums and tongue or at most do it unconsciously.
Use recommended toothpaste and brush
This is another aspect of dental care that deserves to be published in the papers. Seriously, you need to really consider what toothbrush or toothpaste they are using if you look forward to keeping your teeth healthy. The tendency most times is to buy a popular brand, not because it is good for you but because it is what every other person seems to be using. Dentists will tell us this is not how you decide which toothbrush or toothpaste to use and which to not.
Even the length of time for which you use a particular toothbrush has to be checked. Generally it is at most three months. But most people do not follow it. Sometimes it is because the one they are using still looks good enough to do a great job. At other times the toothbrush is not changed even after three months because the individual does not know it is time to get a different one.
Some tooth brushes have very hard bristles. Ironically some people seem to think such toothbrushes do a more effective job of cleaning the teeth. Well, that is not true. When the bristles of your toothbrush are too hard, especially to the extent that you feel even slight discomfort while brushing, you should not be using it.
Such toothbrushes end up wounding the gums and enlarging cavities that may already have been cause by other things. This makes it more difficult to get food particles out of the teeth completely and easier for bacteria to thrive in your mouth. It is not very easy to tell how soft or hard a good toothbrush should be but you can always have a hint by checking how comfortable you feel while using it as well as how effective your brushing sessions seem to be.
What we all need to do is first, visit a dentist and get our teeth checked, then ask for recommendations on what toothpaste or toothbrush to use depending on our dental health.
That means using recommended toothbrushes and paste only. Even if what is recommended is not the popular choice or is not what you are used to, you need to make the changes. And the dentist’s recommendations may be more expensive too (they usually are). But why not spend a few more dollars to get something better for oral health than spend more money on curing cavities, mouth sores, tooth aches and other such painful infections that result from carelessness? Again remember, prevention is better than cure.
What you eat or drink. How hot or cold?
Eating or drinking things that are either too cold or too hot has an adverse effect on one’s oral hygiene or health. Extreme temperatures compromise tooth enamels and make then vulnerable to materials or processes that can erode them. It gets even worse when you take something very cold immediately after drinking or eating something very hot. The instant change in temperature from one extreme to the other does a better job at compromising the enamel and leaving your tooth vulnerable to attacks.
Drinking tea is something we like to do, and yes you can. But the tea does not need to be taken at boiling temperatures. Even the gums could be wounded by such high temperatures and such wounds are likely going to become painful mouth sores if care is not taken.
Avoid acidic fruits and drinks
There are many fruits and drinks people are so fond of but have very high acid content. Lemon, limes, grapes, wine etc. These things are highly acidic and have a great tendency to cause erosion of the tooth enamel. For one thing, the acidic content of such fruits and drinks provide food and favorable conditions for bacteria that feeds on it to thrive.
Heavy wine drinkers are more likely to have dental issues than those who do not take wine or other things high in acidic content. Ladies too consider drinking lemon and water as a substitute for tea, probably a weight loss measure. But lemon is not good for the teeth and if you do drink it frequently, you are slowly causing damages to your teeth which may pose serious problems in the future.
If you are fond of these things and just don’t want to quit taking them altogether, you can start by taking them less frequently or make sure you rinse your mouth thoroughly every time you do.
Some Common Oral Issues and How to deal with them
These are little painful and irritating wounds that appear on the gum and sometimes on or under the tongue. Generally, mouth sores are the result of plague left unattended due to poor oral hygiene. They erode parts of the tissues in the mouth, producing little painful sores which if left for a while without proper treatment may increase in size and become even more painful. Eating or even drinking anything hot becomes a serious problem for people who have mouth sores.
The most probable cause of mouth sores is irregularity in brushing sessions and ineffective cleaning. That is how plagues are missed and then they begin to cause damages. Mouth sores are also quite easy to deal with, especially if care is taken to handle it from the onset of the infection. An antibiotic or two could resolve the matter but if not, your dentist will definitely give you something more effective. On your part, just become more responsible at brushing and cleaning your mouth and you may not even need to see a dentist or take any drugs for that matter.
Cavities are also commonly known as tooth decay. They result when bacteria in the mouth produces acid that slowly wears away the enamel, forming holes in the tooth. Such bacteria feeds on sugar and use it to produce the acids that erodes the enamel. Normally, this should not even occur if you have a healthy dental care routine. However, if you do allow some lapses now and then, then you should not be surprised when cavities show up. It is particularly important that you take specific measure to protect the enamel because once it is worn out, there is no natural way to reverse the damage caused.
For children and elderly people, more care should be taken to prevent any compromise of the enamel because theirs are weaker. For very young children however, they would have any damaged enamel replaced once the tooth is replaced. After that your chances of dealing with cavities by natural replacement are slim if not nil. Technological advancements are now presenting ways to fill up holes in the enamel but that is no match for the real thing so do well to keep yours intact.
This is probably the most embarrassing of all dental problems one could face. Though not painful, bad breath is not something anyone wants to associate with. Like all other issues related with dental hygiene, bad breath is the result of poor poor oral routines. Common habits like eating too late in the night or between meals could be most common cause of bad breath. You need to make some changes in your dental cleaning routine to effectively do away with the problem of mouth odor. For severe cases, it may not be as simple as that to deal with the issue.
If you have ever had toothache, you will know just how important it is to prevent it from happening again. Toothaches are extremely painful, to say the least. It is sometimes called tooth or root infection and is the result of a damaged pulp tissue and bacteria settlement and accumulation at the root of a tooth. Tooth ache is very closely related to cavities because most times they are the result of cavities left unattended to.
In the case where the tooth ache is caused by a cavity, the best way to deal with it is to get your dentist to clean and fill the cavity. Ultimately the infected tooth may have to be completely removed if the damage is far too much to be fixed.
For some people, tooth aches come with less pain and the pain is also not very frequent. Generally, if the pain persist for more than two days, it is time to see a dentist (and I doubt you will stand the pain for more than a few hours if the tooth ache is really severe).
The best thing is to prevent a toothache in the first place and the best way to prevent it is to adhere to strict and recommended oral hygiene. If you already have cavity, don’t let it get worse simply because it is not painful or does not pose any problems yet. Meeting a dentist on time is usually the best thing to do. It will spare you a lot of time, money and pain.
Conclusively, your dental care or oral health is your responsibility and something which should be taken very seriously if you want to still be using your teeth when you are old.