Having great oral health goes beyond brushing your teeth daily. Granted that you’re doing the bare minimum of flossing regularly, hydrating properly, and visiting the dentist twice a year, you must also extend your efforts on other aspects of your life.

It may not be immediately obvious, but caring for your mouth means caring for the rest of your body. This is the first step in avoiding the expensive costs of dealing with bad health due to poor oral hygiene.

Healthy Mouth, Healthy Habits

The mouth serves as the gateway to your most important internal systems. Although it can’t completely filter out all the bad bacteria that it comes across, you can definitely do your part in containing them.

Oral health experts from Wheat Ridge Dentist suggests doing the following things on top of the other habits that you’ve already established:

1. Choose Fluoride Toothpaste

It’s usually tempting to choose a toothpaste based on its taste and whitening powers, but you should go for the one that has fluoride in it. Of course, it would be much better if you also like its flavor.

Fluoride guards your teeth from tooth decay by fighting against disease-causing microorganisms. It also provides your teeth with a protective barrier so germs can’t easily damage your teeth.

It’s advisable not to rinse off the toothpaste after brushing so it leaves a bit of fluoride on your teeth. Understandably, it may feel weird to have toothpaste residue in your mouth, especially when you’re heading off to work in the morning. You can do this before you go to bed, instead.

2. Choose the Right Toothbrush

Given that you’re already brushing with the proper technique, the next step is to ensure that you’re using the right tool for the job. The right toothbrush is typically the one that has soft bristles since it minimizes teeth and gum injury.

Most toothbrushes last around 2 to 3 months before their bristles get blunt. Make sure that you’re not forceful with your brush strokes to avoid gum bleeding.

3. Use Mouthwash to Keep Mouth Bacteria at Bay

While toothpaste is enough to guard your teeth from germs, you can step up your oral routine by also using mouthwash. Although you may feel like mouthwash advertisements are just a marketing ploy to get you to buy the product, it actually serves a purpose.

It keeps your mouth healthy by:

  • Reducing acid in your mouth
  • Cleaning hard-to-reach areas
  • Remineralizing your teeth

Mouthwash may be especially helpful in cases where flossing isn’t ideal. For best results, ask your dentist for recommendations, as there are brands out there that are a good fit for certain conditions (e.g. sensitive teeth).

4. Go for Crunchy Fruits and Veggies

Nowadays, there’s a lot of easy-to-eat food available in the market. While this has made eating more convenient, it’s not really helpful for your teeth and jaw.

Including crunchy fruits and veggies in your diet usually improves your dental health. Notable recommendations include carrots, oranges, apples, melons, strawberries, and leafy greens (e.g. broccoli, kale, spinach, etc.).

5. Avoid Acidic and Sugary Food Items

Acid and sugar are two of the main culprits of tooth damage. They usually come from chocolates, soda, tea, coffee, and even some fruits.

You don’t necessarily have to give up all of these things forever, but it also helps to be mindful of the quality of your food intake. Sugar generally invites bacteria into your mouth, leading to plaque and tooth damage. It’s also responsible for turning your mouth acidic, which causes your teeth’s enamel to erode.

6. Quit Smoking

You’ve already heard before that smoking doesn’t help your lungs. Unfortunately, it doesn’t help your teeth either. With regards to mouth health, smoking is mostly known for teeth discoloration, but its bad effects go beyond that.

Like sugar, the tar and nicotine in cigarettes create an inviting environment for plaque and bacteria. Not only does this harm your gums, but it also degrades the structures that hold your teeth. It may even cause oral cancer at its worst.

Conclusion: Good Dental Health Relies on Your Lifestyle

No matter how often you brush or floss, you still won’t be able to keep your mouth healthy if you’re destroying your teeth in other ways. Your lifestyle has as much effect as your overall hygiene does in ensuring that your mouth is clean and healthy.

Hence, if you don’t want to keep your smile from the world, make sure that your lifestyle and habits are fit for a good dental health.

Cite this article as:
Editorial Staff, "Key Ways to Help Maintain Good Dental Health," in Medicalopedia, November 26, 2019, [Permalink: https://www.medicalopedia.org/8013/key-ways-to-help-maintain-good-dental-health/].