As the excitement and indulgence of the holiday season come to an end, the New Year marks an excellent time to reinforce good habits and set new goals for self-improvement. Proper oral hygiene promotes good overall health as well as a great smile. In this blog post, top Seattle dentist Dr. Dean Kois discusses ways to start the New Year right with tips for healthier teeth.
Brushing and Flossing
Regular brushing and flossing lay the groundwork for happy teeth and gums. Follow these tips to ensure you are cleaning your teeth properly:
- Brush at least twice a day. Frequent brushing prevents the buildup of harmful acids that break down tooth enamel.
- Place your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle to your gum line, and brush in a back-and-forth and up-and-down motion.
- Use a brush with soft or medium bristles. Avoid hard bristles that can irritate the gums.
- Floss daily. Your toothbrush alone cannot reach between all your teeth.
- Don’t forget to brush your tongue. Brushing your tongue removes bacteria that can negatively impact your teeth and cause bad breath.
Eat Healthy Foods
Sugars convert into harmful, enamel-eroding acids in your mouth. This causes cavities and weakens your teeth. Not only does a healthy diet help you stay fit, it also promotes good oral hygiene. You don’t have to cut out sugary snacks entirely, but keep them to a minimum and brush soon after you eat them. Snacking on crunchy vegetables and fruits, such as carrots and apples, can help clean your teeth by removing previously built up food residue.
Avoid Sugary Beverages
Sodas, coffee, alcohol and even fruit juice can all negatively impact your teeth, due to the high levels of sugars and acids they contain. Water is always the best way to rehydrate, but if you choose to drink something sweet or alcoholic, make sure to rinse your mouth out with water soon afterwards to minimize buildup. Drinking milk is also safe for your teeth, and delivers a good dose of calcium and vitamin D to your body, which helps promote healthy teeth, bones and gums.
Good oral hygiene starts at home, but regular trips to the dentist are also necessary to ensure a healthy smile. To schedule an appointment with Dr. Dean Kois or Dr. Tara Kois, call Kois Dentistry at (206) 515-9500.