10 Oral Hygiene Tips

Maintaining your oral health is a key part of your overall health and well-being. Here, our Winnipeg dentists offer their best oral hygiene tips to help keep your teeth and dental health in peak condition.

Here are some of the most common oral hygiene tips that can help you have good dental health for life.

1. Brushing for two minutes, twice daily.

It is recommended that you brush your teeth twice each day, aiming for 2 to 4 minutes per brushing session. Start with your brush at a 45-degree angle in a sweeping motion. Brush your upper teeth using a sweeping downward motion, and your lower teeth using a sweeping upward motion. You should only brush back and forth on chewing surfaces. 

2. Flossing your teeth before bed each night.

Flossing your teeth every night before you brush them not only helps remove debris but also minimizes the risk of tooth decay. This is also a way that you can help with gum health. Use a piece of floss up to 18 inches long so you can use a fresh area of floss for every few teeth. Keep in mind the floss should rub against the teeth in a motion that creates a forward or backward 'C' shape, wrapping the floss around each tooth.

3. Rinse with mouthwash every time you brush.

Adding mouthwash to your oral hygiene routine can help to kill the germs that can build up in your mouth. Because mouthwash can go where toothbrushes and floss can't, it can help to rid your mouth of debris that can irritate the gum line and lead to gum disease.

4. Daily tongue brushing or scraping. 

After brushing your teeth, bacteria can still remain on the tongue. Brushing or scraping your tongue as part of your daily routine can help to get rid of this bacteria, and also helps to freshen your breath. Be sure to use one toothbrush for brushing, and a different toothbrush for scraping your tongue. 

5. Keeping up with routine professional dental care.

Visit the dentist, at least twice a year, for a dental examination and cleaning. Dentists and hygienists have tools and techniques to clean your teeth far more thoroughly than you can at home. By undergoing regular dental exams you provide your dentist with the option to diagnose and treat any potential concerns before they become more serious.

6. Seek dental care as soon as you need it.

Many people have fears that prevent them from getting dental treatments, while others avoid treatments because they think that they will be too costly. The truth is, preventive check-ups and treatments do not cost much compared to extensive care for a dental crown or implant. Avoiding necessary treatments may impact your dental hygiene in a negative way and end up costing you more in the long run.

7. Try to cut down on sugar and unhealthy foods.

Whatever it is that you chose to eat with have some type of effect on the body including an effect on your teeth. So be sure to eat plenty of fruits and veggies, and minimize your consumption of sugar which leads to cavities. Calcium and Vitamin D are necessary for maintaining the health of gums and teeth. You may take supplements, but it is better to drink milk and fortified orange juice and to eat yogurt, broccoli, cheese, and other dairy products. Vitamin B complex is also essential for the protection of gums and teeth from cracking and bleeding. 

8. Don't partake in alcohol or sodas.

Beverages containing additives such as corn syrup and food dye can make white teeth appear dull and discoloured. It is best to choose beverages such as milk, which helps to strengthen teeth and build stronger enamel, and water which hydrates your body.

9.  Wear a mouthguard when playing sports.

If you play sports or other contact activities, it is recommended to wear a mouth guard to protect your teeth and gums from impact or injury. Most dental offices offer custom-made mouthguards for patients to comfortably fit their smiles and keep their teeth safe from damage. 

10. Kick any bad habits that you have.

Steer clear of tobacco and other substances that are harmful to your teeth, and try to break habits such as biting your nails or opening bottle caps with your teeth. If you have the habit of sucking your thumb, lip-biting, tongue-thrusting, or clenching your teeth, consult a dentist for treatment options.

Would you like to learn more about keeping up with ongoing oral hygiene habits? Contact our Winnipeg dentists to request an appointment today.

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