The old saying “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure” is especially true when it comes to your teeth. By taking good care of your mouth, you can avoid painful and often expensive dental procedures down the road, ensuring your teeth — and your wallet! — stay healthy.
Most people understand the importance of brushing your teeth, but they don’t always know the steps beyond that daily routine. We’ve put together this list of essential preventative oral care tips to help you learn how to care for your teeth at home, which will help avoid cavities and other problems in the long run.
1. Determine If You’re at a Higher Risk for Tooth Decay
Did you know some people are more susceptible to tooth decay than others? Even if you floss and brush every day, there may be lifestyle or environmental factors that put you at greater risk, such as:
- The amount of fluoride in your water
- Family history of disease
- Drug and alcohol abuse
- Suffering from HPV
- Past dental work
You can take an online quiz to determine your likelihood of suffering tooth decay, or you can talk with someone at Anderson Dental about it. If you do find you’re susceptible, you’ll need to increase your efforts to keep plaque and tartar at bay.
2. Know How to Brush
Most of us have been brushing our teeth for decades and feel confident we know how to provide proper oral care. But, in fact, you may be doing it wrong. Many people move their toothbrushes improperly, use a brush that’s too big for their teeth, or saw way too hard on their sensitive gums and choppers.
We can help you figure out the right way to brush by offering suggestions on gradually changing your brushing motions and getting every tooth brushed correctly.
3. Get Regular Check-Ups
People often ask us, “Why should you go to the dentist regularly?” Many would rather just pop in once each decade to get a cavity filled. But when you get regular preventative care at our office, you’re saving yourself from major problems down the road.
A biannual visit will catch small problems, such as cavities or deteriorating prior dental work, and allow us to address them immediately. Plus, we can track how your teeth change through yearly X-rays. When you skip regular check-ups, you run the risk of needing:
- Root canals
- Gum disease treatment
- Crowns or bridges
4. Eat Tooth-Friendly Foods
It’s hard to overemphasize the importance of diet to oral health. Avoiding foods with loads of sugar can protect your teeth from tooth decay. Drinks such as juice and soda also will eat away at your enamel.
On the other hand, tooth-friendly foods, such as apples and carrots, can clean your teeth. Drinking lots of water helps wash away food debris, and foods with calcium such as cheese and yogurt make your teeth stronger.
Follow these four tips and your smile will benefit! Payson Dental office and ask our Anderson Dental employees for more ideas on how to keep your teeth healthy.