10 tips to maintain healthy teeth and keep cavities at bay
The key to good dental health lies in brushing correctly and maintaining good oral hygiene. And no, expensive toothpastes won’t do the trick, though it is always best to go for toothpastes that contain fluoride which sticks to the enamel and prevents cavities, triclosan which prevents plaque and zinc which can remove tartar.
Here are some tips to brush right:
*Select the right area: Instead of carelessly brushing in every direction, ensure that you focus on the area where your teeth meet your gums, which is where gum disease can happen.
* Don’t use the same brush for long: One of the most common mistakes that we make is to use the same toothbrush for months at a time. Dentists recommend that you change your toothbrush every three to four months.
* The right angle: Place the toothbrush at a 45 degree angle against your teeth and move it in a circular motion to clean each tooth. Gently flick the toothbrush from the gums to the biting edge of the teeth to remove plaque. Ensure you brush the inside surface of the teeth. And lastly, gently brush your tongue to remove bacteria.
* Brush twice a day: You’ve been hearing this adage from childhood, but it remains true and beneficial even today. Take just two minutes of your time to brush twice a day and your dental problems will substantially reduce.
* Don’t brush too hard: Brushing too hard won’t clean your teeth better, and may, in fact, wear down the teeth enamel and damage gums.
* Go for regular check-ups: Don’t visit the dentist only once you have toothache. Make at least a yearly visit to the dentist to ensure there is no cavity and subsequent dental complications.
* Avoid tobacco and coffee: Smoking and chewing tobacco can increase your risk of getting cavities and gum recession, which can make teeth sensitive. Coffee can stain your teeth.
* Eat the right food: Foods that are high in fibre are good for your teeth while foods that are rich in sugar are not. Have fresh fruit over juices.
* Clean your tongue: Oral hygiene is not limited to the teeth and gums. You must also clean the tongue to maintain good dental hygiene. It will remove the bacteria that tend to cause bad breath.
* Floss before sleeping: Flossing is particularly recommended for adults with gaps between their teeth. But be cautious. Over-flossing can damage the gums.
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