Top Ways to Improve Your Dental Health
Dental health is just as important as physical health when it comes to an individual’s overall well-being. Studies have shown a link between oral health and many diseases, including cardiovascular disease. This illustrates how vital it is for individuals to preserve the health of their smile.
Dentist Bruce J. Wilderman is happy to offer a comprehensive range of dental services that help people in Philadelphia, PA, Bucks County, and Doylestown, PA, maintain good oral health, but professional dental care is only part of the equation. We encourage our patients to consider these top ways to improve dental health and preserve the smile.
Brush the Teeth Regularly
Toothbrushing is the best thing that a person can do on their own to improve dental health. Brushing rids the teeth of food particles to prevent the buildup of bacteria that can lead to plaque and tartar. Ideally, people should brush their teeth three times a day, or after every meal. However, with the busy schedules that most people keep, brushing twice a day is sufficient to obtain the oral health benefits that brushing provides.
It is important that people take the time to brush their teeth correctly. Brushing the teeth should take around two minutes, and all the teeth should get some attention. To start, place the toothbrush at a 45 degree angle near the gumline and use short back-and-forth strokes to clean along the top of the teeth. Next, brush the back of the teeth, the biting surface of the teeth, and, finally, the tongue.
Many people avoid flossing because it takes too much time or it hurts their gums. However, flossing is an essential part of an oral health care routine, and the more someone does it the easier it becomes. Flossing is important because it reaches the tight spaces between the teeth that may be missed when brushing. We recommend brushing at least once a day, ideally before bed.
Use the Right Toothbrush
Toothbrushing is a helpful oral habit, but it can actually be harmful if people use a toothbrush that is dirty or overly rough on the teeth. Toothbrushes with soft bristles tend to be ideal. They effectively clean the teeth without damaging tooth enamel. Electric toothbrushes are also a good option, because they provide strong cleaning power without a lot of force or pressure.
Whichever type of toothbrush is used, it is important to replace it regularly. We suggest replacing your toothbrush (or toothbrush head) every three months. It is also a good idea to replace your toothbrush following an illness.
Schedule Routine Dental Exams and Cleanings
Regardless of how good a person is about brushing and flossing their teeth, professional dental exams and cleanings are a necessity. Dental cleanings eliminate sticky plaque and tartar that are resistant to toothbrushing, while dental exams diagnose any potential dental complications so that they can be treated before they cause further damage.
Maintain a Nutritious Diet
A healthy diet goes a long way in promoting good oral health. It is especially important to minimize the consumption of sugary foods and drinks, like candy, soda, and fruit juices. Acidic foods and beverages, like wine and coffee, should also be consumed in moderation, since acids break down tooth enamel to weaken the teeth and increase the risk of dental stains.
Avoid Bad Dental Habits
Finally, to promote good oral health, individuals should avoid bad dental habits. Bad dental habits are any practice that compromises the strength and health of the teeth and/or increases the risk of dental complications. Habits to avoid include:
- Nail biting
- Using the teeth as tools
- Grinding or clenching the teeth
Contact Dr. Bruce Wilderman
If you are due for a routine dental exam or cleaning, consider scheduling an appointment with Dr. Bruce Wilderman. He and his team offer a comprehensive range of dental services that can help you enjoy a strong, healthy, and attractive smile. To learn more, send us a message online, or call our office at (215) 340-1199.