5 Resolutions for Healthier Teeth in 2019
It's 2019—and it's time for better health. You can start now with better dental care. If you want to improve the way that you're taking care of yourself and your smile, these resolutions can be your first few steps. Here are some simple, easy things that you can do to make sure that your smile remains bright and healthy.
Resolution 1: Don't go to bed without brushing your teeth.
You need to brush your teeth at least twice in a 24 hour period to make sure that bacteria can't settle in and start to do damage. Bacteria are constantly being introduced into our mouths, and it's actually quite normal. However, sugary diets have made it so that these bacteria can grow rampant if they aren't addressed regularly. If you're going to bed without brushing, you're giving bacteria time to do damage to your teeth. If you have to, make sure you set an alarm every night for your nightly brushing.
Resolution 2: Commit to flossing—and do it right.
Flossing is incredibly important because there are areas that a brush just can't get into. If you aren't flossing between your teeth, bacteria is safely growing in those areas. Plaque can build up easily and give them safe harbor, and even mouthwash isn't going to be able to rinse it all away. Of course, flossing incorrectly is often just as bad as not doing it at all. Make sure you're flossing correctly. If you have trouble flossing, consider getting a flossing pick that has better reach. For some individuals, a water pick can also give very similar benefits, in addition to massaging your gums.
Resolution 3: Go beyond cleaning your teeth.
Cleaning your teeth isn't just about removing food and plaque. It's mostly about removing bacteria. Usinga mouthwashand brushing your tongue will reduce the overall amount of bacteria in your mouth, which will greatly reduce the chances that you could experience cavities and gum disease. Many mouthwashes provide bacterial protection throughout the day as well, and they can even brighten your teeth. On a personal level, mouthwash can also be used to remove food particles and to freshen your breath. Brushing your tongue has a similar impact, and you may not be able to get clean, fresh breath without it.
Resolution 4: Eat and drink for healthier teeth.
Sugar feeds bacteria in your mouth, which is what ultimately leads to cavities. Acid can break down the enamel of your teeth, making them weak and more likely to get damaged. Limit sugary, acidic foods and try to focus on eating crunchy fruits and vegetables that will naturally clean your teeth. Foods that have a lot of calcium can also promote better tooth health, especially at the base of your teeth where it's most important. The base of your teeth are what control whether you'll be able to keep your teeth; teeth that are damaged from the root up often need to be extracted. Better overall health generally leads to better dental health.
Resolution 5: Visit the dentist at least twice a year.
It can be hard to fit all of those necessary medical visits in, but, ultimately, the best way to manage your dental care is to visit the dentist. Dentists will be able to catch any emerging issues, such as cavities and gum problems. Most insurance will cover preventative maintenance, which usually means two dental visits (and cleanings) a year. A cleaning will reduce the amount of overall plaque in your mouth, in addition to giving you a fresh, clean feeling. Further, your dentist can make suggestions so that you can avoid major dental problems as you age.
That's all you've got to do this year to achieve better dental health—and it's a great first step toward achieving better health overall. Not only will you be happier and have a brighter smile, but you'll also be protecting yourself from gum disease and cavities. Get started now by making your first dental appointment of 2019.