Realistic Resolutions for your Dental Health in 2015

As we just entered the New Year, it’s time to set our sights on new achievements, accomplishment or improvements. There’s something in everyone’s life that can be improved–most likely, more than one something. For some, it’s losing weight, eating healthier or taking the stairs instead of the elevator.

How about some dental health resolutions this year? Many of us overlook the importance of oral health and how it can impact how people see us and how we see ourselves. Taking better care of your mouth is really not that hard and the results can be life changing.

Flossing

Flossing is one of those things that everyone knows we should do, but we still think our mouth is just fine without it. In fact, statistics show that only 12% of people in developed countries floss every day. Flossing is essential to preventing cavities from forming in hard-to-reach and hard-to-treat areas between teeth, as well as preventing gum disease. “Flossing does about 40% of the work required to remove sticky bacteria, or plaque, from your teeth.” (WebMD) This means that if you’re brushing only, your teeth are only 60% clean. When you have a shower, do you clean only 60% of your body? Your teeth deserve the same thorough cleaning.

Regular dental checkups

Many people make the mistake of thinking that they don’t really need to see a dentist until there’s something wrong. Kinda like not seeing a doctor for annual physicals because if you don’t feel there’s anything wrong, there’s nothing to worry about. Any dentist will tell you that most dental problems are present when there aren’t any symptoms. By the time symptoms appear, the situation is pretty far advanced and will likely require more invasive, extensive and expensive dental treatment, than if it had been prevented with regular cleanings and check-ups, or caught and treated earlier. It’s only twice a year, and it will be worth it in the long run.

Brushing your tongue

Like flossing, many people don’t realize how important this simple thing is to maintaining your overall oral health. One of the principal causes of bad breath is bacteria in the mouth and that bacteria is not only on your teeth, but also on your tongue. Bacteria feeds on plaque and plaque can develop on your tongue just as well as your teeth. Our tongues are covered in hundreds of tiny, moist ridges which are prime breeding grounds for bacteria.

Drinking lots of water

Drinking water is not only critical for keeping you hydrated, but also for rinsing food particles and bacteria away from the surface of your teeth. Drinking water is particularly important after you’ve eaten something sweet, starchy or sticky and there’s no toothbrush around. Actually, it’s better to rinse with water immediately after eating or drinking something sweet, starchy, or sticky because brushing right away can actually further damage your enamel. So, rinse with water first, wait 20 to 30 minutes, and then brush.

Eating crisp, fleshy fruits and vegetables

2015

Most of us know that fruits and vegetables are necessary for a healthy diet. What most of us don’t know is that fruits and veggies are also necessary for dental health. Chewing fleshy apples, watermelons, and pears increase salivation and in the case of apples, act as a natural toothbrush. Carrots, celery and root vegetables and other firm veggies stimulate the gum while the water content also helps clean teeth. Leafy greens are loaded with vitamins and minerals that your body needs to keep your teeth, bones, and gums healthy.

See? That wasn’t so hard, was it? Such simple resolutions that can make a world of difference in your oral health in 2015.

One thought on “Realistic Resolutions for your Dental Health in 2015

  1. Deanna R. Jones

    Thanks for posting! I usually do a good job with brushing my teeth every day, but I’m still not in the habit of flossing my teeth. That seems like a dental health resolution that I need to get started on right away. I know that it helps to keep your gums healthier, but I didn’t know that it prevents cavities by getting rid of the food that’s between your teeth. That would probably explain why I still get cavities, even though I brush my teeth every morning and evening.

    Reply

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