Oral care is incredibly important. Not only can poor oral care affect your teeth and gums, but some conditions can spread to or affect other parts of the body. If you would like to know more, check out these three tips for great oral care.
1. Brush and Floss Regularly
Ideally, you should brush and floss at least two times a day. However, you can and should brush more often if you consume something particularly sugary or sticky. In between brushing and flossing, drinking water can help rinse out your mouth. Saliva also naturally removes some particles, so if you have a dry mouth, make sure to drink plenty of water and speak with your dentist for treatments.
When brushing, do not brush too hard. This can damage the enamel, and damaged/thin enamel increases the risk of tooth decay. Similarly, if you brush right after consuming something acidic (or after vomiting), you may scrape off some enamel. Acid softens the enamel, so you should rinse your mouth out but wait to brush.
2. Get Regular Exams and Cleanings
Even if you brush and floss regularly, you need regular dental exams and cleanings. The cleanings remove any tartar from the left-behind plaque. During exams, your dentist can monitor your overall oral health to look for warning signs of future issues, including:
- Gum disease
- Orthodontia needs
- Tooth abscess
In addition, during exams, the dentist will make note of anything that may indicate a more complex issue like oral cancer. Exams and cleanings may consist of:
- Scraping along or below the gum line
- Pocket measuring
- Taking X-rays
- Doing fluoride treatments
3. Restore Decay Before It Spreads
If you spot a cavity or suspect you have a cavity, seek treatment before it spreads. Cavities won't go away on their own, and if left untreated, they can grow to destroy more and more tooth tissue. If the cavity becomes big enough, it increases the risk of the tooth cracking or even shattering.
If decay reaches the tooth pulp and/or roots, it may lead to a tooth infection or abscess, which usually requires root canal treatment and a dental crown.
If you want to care for your teeth, oral care is the key. You need good at-home care, but regular dental visits are also a must. If you would like to know more about oral care, contact a local dental office, such as Smile Solutions LLC.