Oral hygiene gets the short straw. Even though it’s is often taken for granted, it’s one of the most important aspects of your overall health.
So to help you stay focused on keeping your mouth healthy, here’s the complete guide to proper oral care.
Why Proper Oral Care Is So Important?
Your teeth are important. Obviously, they chew food, but in chewing food they also begin the digestion process. The more a food is chewed, the better the rest of your body will do at digesting it.
But teeth also help us talk, allowing us to make certain sounds (like “TH,” “S,” and “L” sounds, to name a few). And teeth help give our face structure and shape.
This is why proper oral hygiene is so important. If you don’t take care of your teeth, it could lead to severe damage, unnecessary procedures, and overall inconvenience.
A lot of people don’t realize how important teeth are, but they’re probably one of the most important parts of your face.
Oral Hygiene Instructions
Here are some instructions and tips for properly taking care of your mouth -- your teeth, gums, and tongue. Follow these tips and you’ll have top-notch oral health.
Brush & Floss Your Teeth
This is the most crucial step in any oral hygiene routine.
The first thing you should do is choose the right toothbrush and toothpaste for you. Once you do that, you can begin your brushing routine.
Here’s generally what it should look like:
- Brush twice a day for two minutes each time
- Hold your brush at a 45-degree angle toward your gums
- Brush every surface of each quadrant of your teeth -- front, backs, sides, tops, everywhere
- If you’d like to brush your tongue from fresh breath, use a little toothpaste and brush in a circular motion (try not to gag yourself)
- Floss your teeth every day
- Using 45-cm floss, wrap either end of it around your fingers and slide it in between each tooth
- Floss along the curvature of your teeth to keep from hurting your gums
- After 1-2 teeth, wrap the dirty floss around your finger so you can use the clean floss for the next teeth
- You can also gently scrape your tongue with a fresh piece of floss
Consider Using Mouthwash
Rinsing your mouth with mouthwash is pretty simple. Just fill the cup included with your mouthwash, put it in your mouth and rinse/swish for about 30 seconds, and spit (don’t swallow).
Doing this once a day can help give you a fresh feeling and kill bacteria.
You can also choose whitening mouthwash so you can brighten up your smile while cleaning your entire mouth.
Visit Your Dentist RegularlyEveryone should visit their dentist twice a year for a regular checkup and cleaning. It’s not enough to just brush, floss, and rinse on a regular basis.
Change Your Diet
You can change a couple of things in your diet that can help your oral health. I’m not suggesting you go on a diet or do anything radical. There are just some little changes you can make, like eating the right food for healthy, whiter teeth.
First, you can cut back on the sugary foods and drinks. It’s not so much about the amount of sugar you eat, but more so the frequency at which you eat sugary foods. The reason is that sugar converts into acid, which can erode enamel and eventually lead to cavities.
Now, it takes about an hour for your mouth to do away with the acid in your mouth. Basically, acid is attacking your mouth and your mouth is fighting back. So during this time, it’s best to not eat foods that will lead to more attacks. After you eat, the acid-killing battle can go faster if you drink water or chew sugar-free gum.
Second, you can eat crunchy vegetables and fruits. They have fiber, which is healthy for your teeth, and they help exercise your jaw. Plus, the texture helps scrape off food debris.
Simply put, don’t smoke. That is if you want to have good oral hygiene.
Not only can smoking lead to teeth stains, gum diseases, and even tooth loss, but it can also lead to mouth cancer. The nicotine and tar are the things that will kill your oral condition -- they yellow your teeth and cause the other aforementioned problems.
If you want to achieve a beautiful smile, it may not be enough to follow the above instructions and recommendations. Granted, these things are super important if you want a healthy mouth.
Because doing all the right things to keep your mouth healthy may not be enough to keep your smile as bright as it could be.