5 Tips for a Healthy Mouth and a Beautiful Smile

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Do You Think a Beautiful Smile Happens Naturally? It Doesn’t.

Brushing, flossing and rinsing are the ABCs of oral health, but they're only the beginning. A marvelous mouth takes more than squeezing paste out of a tube - think about improving your tooth brushing technique, ditching the daily soda habit, and saying good-bye to cigarettes. Here are five ways to a fantastic smile from the team at Lehigh Valley Smile Designs.

Brush Twice a Day for two to three minutes with fluoridated toothpaste. Practice proper technique. Although you probably know you should brush your teeth at least twice a day, if you're like most people, you don't give much thought to how to do it. Hold the toothbrush at a 45-degree angle, pointed toward the gum line, and use gentle, short, circular motions. Brush each tooth 10 to 15 times, but don't overdo it. Overly aggressive brushing can damage teeth and erode your gum line.

Floss Daily to remove plaque from places your toothbrush can't reach. It's simple: Flossing fosters healthier teeth and gums. But like brushing, there's a right and wrong way because flaws in your flossing can cause friction and damage the gum line. Wrap about a foot of floss around your index fingers, keeping about two inches between your fingers to work with. Use clean sections of floss as you move from tooth to tooth, and keep the floss tight against the tooth to break up plaque while leaving your gums in good shape.

Eat a Healthy Diet to provide the nutrients necessary to prevent gum disease. The best way to maintain a healthy mouth is by eating a healthy diet. Be sure to include nutritious foods that offer vitamins A through E for healthy gums. In addition, eat crunchy fruits and vegetables to help clean your teeth. Even eating pineapple can lessen stains on teeth. Cut back on sugar which is a major culprit in tooth decay. It fuels bacteria and acidity in your mouth, causing plaque to form and eat away at your enamel and gums. Your pearly whites are hit with up to 20 minutes of acid production for every sugar fest you indulge in, from sweetened coffee in the morning to ice cream at night. To avoid being among the 20% of people in the United States who face tooth decay every time they look in the mirror, try to cut down on sugary treats.

Avoid Tobacco Use, which may contribute to gum disease and oral cancer. You've heard it before: Quit smoking. But this time, it's your dentist talking. The nicotine and tar in cigarettes not only turn your teeth an unsightly shade of yellow, they eat away at your gums. Smoking creates a ripe environment for bacteria and plaque on your teeth and along the gum line. That harms tissue, degrades the bone that supports teeth, and, eventually, increases your risk of tooth loss. Even worse, tobacco chemicals can lead to oral cancer.

Regular Dental Checkups are the surest way to detect early signs of periodontal disease. If you're prone to ditching the dentist, you're among the roughly 50% of adults in the United States who don't see a dentist yearly because of dental phobia, finances, or just plain neglect. But spend some quality time with your dentist (twice a year, the American Dental Association advises), and you'll catch problems at an early stage when they're treatable, not to mention more affordable to take care of. Seeing a dentist regularly helps to keep your mouth in top shape and allows your dentist to watch for developments that may point to other health issues. A dental exam can also detect poor nutrition and hygiene, growth and development problems and improper jaw alignment. Provide your dentist at Lehigh Valley Smile Designs with a complete medical history and inform him or her of any recent health developments, even if they seem unrelated to your oral health.

Sources: Delta Dental, WebMD

 

 

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