We describe 8 simple ways to having healthy teeth – it works for our patients and it should work for everyone.
1 – Brush your teeth twice per day for a minimum of 2 minutes
We recommend that you brush your teeth in the morning and the last thing before going to bed. At night, the saliva flow in your mouth is significantly reduced. It is in this ‘dry-mouth’ environment that bacteria can flourish very quickly and cause tooth decay.
Fluoride is an essential ingredient in toothpaste and you can read more about the importance of fluoride and what to look for in our recent blog on the topic of fluoride.
2 – Use a powered (electric) toothbrush
Studies have shown than an electric toothbrush with an oscillating action is significantly better at plaque removal from teeth when compared with manual toothbrushing. There are many brands on the market and we have not tried them all. However, some of the brands do not use an oscillating action therefore, we cannot be certain about the efficiency of those brushes. What we do know is the Oral B make electric brushes that oscillate and these brushes are very effective at plaque removal.
Top tip – buy one
3 – Visit the dentist regularly
Your dentist will recommend regular appointments at intervals which are specific to your dental requirements. Prevention is better than cure and your dentist will know how vulnerable you may be to certain dental problems therefore will advise you to attend every 3, 6 or 12 months depending on your dental situation.
4 – Diet plan must be considered
How often one has sugary foods is critical when determining an individuals risks of developing dental decay. Therefore, if sugary foods are limited for consumption only at mealtimes, that is far more favourable than to have them as snacks in between mealtimes.
The reason why this is so important is because…..
5 – The one hour rule!
It takes the mouth approximately 1 hour to neutralise the acidity which is caused by acidic sugary foods. After 1 hour has passed, the saliva neutralises the mouth and the teeth can start to repair themselves in a process termed remineralisation. However, if before that hour has passed more sugary or acidic food is consumed, the 1 hour timer is restarted.
If the mouth is not in a neutral state for a long enough time during the day, remineralisation will not occur successfully and the teeth may incur irreversible damage resulting in tooth decay.
6 – Interdental cleaning
The areas between your teeth are very tight. These areas should be cleaned using dental floss or interdental brushes.
7 – Teeth whitening, orthodontics and cosmetic treatment
If your teeth are healthy then cosmetic treatment is a simple, safe and effective way of improving the appearance of your smile. Orthodontic treatment can straighten your teeth which will not only improve your smile, but also make interdental cleaning between your teeth easier. Tea, coffee and red wine can darken the shade of your teeth over time and teeth whitening treatment can easily undo this staining and lighten the shade of all of your healthy teeth.
8 – Do not use your teeth as tools
Teeth should not be used to open bottle tops, cut tape or bite off nails. This can cause cracking of the tooth surface which may result in fracture of the tooth over time.
If you have any questions please feel free to send us a message using the enquiry form below:
Thank you for reading
Mohsin Patel BDS MJDF RCS (Eng)