According to most dental insurance providers, dental problems are one of today’s leading healthcare issues that are sadly overlooked. This is why it is pretty common to see people who have dental cavities, which affect about 80% of individuals, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). While genetics can play a role, many of these dental care mistakes can be to blame for poor oral health:
Common Oral Care Mistakes
Brushing In the Morning Only
For most people, brushing their teeth is a method to prevent bad breath. However, some individuals will commit the mistake of not brushing their teeth before going to sleep. Remember that your teeth will have tons of food debris in between their teeth, and when you sleep, there is a decreased production of saliva to wash off bacteria. As a result, the bacteria in the oral cavity can feast on this food debris. These bacteria produce acids that can cause tooth decay. That’s why it is essential to brush your teeth at night, and not just in the morning.
There is a notion that the harder your brush your teeth, the cleaner they will be. However, this is a mistake you should be avoiding. Aggressive brushing can lead to enamel abrasion that will strip off your teeth’s protection. Brushing too hard can also cause gum recession that can cause sensitivity issues. How would you know if you are committing this mistake? Look at your toothbrush bristles. If they are fuzzled after only two months of use, then you are committing this mistake. While you are in your bath, examine your gum line and see if they are receding. If you also have bleeding gums, you may be experiencing early signs of gingivitis.
In contrast to aggressive brushing, you may also be committing the mistake of poor brushing techniques. Ideally, you should spend considerable time targeting areas where bacteria can build up. When you don’t allocate enough time to remove these bacteria, they can develop into tartar. When this happens, your oral cavity can have gum inflammation, plaque deposits, and cavities.
Not Flossing Enough
Some individuals like the idea of using mouthwash as an alternative to flossing. This should not be the case. While mouthwash can be effective as an adjunct method to improve your oral hygiene, it cannot replace the mechanical cleaning of your teeth, particularly hard to reach areas. Mouthwash is good for disinfecting your oral cavity, but it is not enough to thoroughly clean and remove food debris.
Floss Picks vs. String Floss
It is true that floss picks are better than nothing. However, it would be more ideal if you can get access to string floss. Most people have the idea that it is enough to simply remove food stuck in between their teeth and move on to the next one. However, most dentists do not recommend this. The up-and-down motion of the string is what ensures that no bacteria will stick to the tooth surface.
How to Properly Care for Your Teeth
Eat Healthy Food Items
Every time you eat sugary food items, your oral cavity becomes a viable host for bacteria to accumulate. Try limiting consumption of sugary food. Instead, replace it with healthy fruits and vegetables to keep your gums healthy.
If you are a smoker, your gums will thank you if you quit smoking. The substances present in cigarettes can cause gum diseases to progress. It also helps lower your immune system’s response to fighting illnesses.
Visit Your Dentist
Oral problems remain an issue, as most individuals will only consider visiting their dentists when they have tooth pain or oral problems. This increases the chance of them having to undergo tooth extraction or a root canal operation. Visiting your dentist at least twice a year can help in the early detection of oral and general health problems.
Cosmetic Dentistry can help you repair any damage to your teeth and regain your smile and confidence should issues occur outside of your preventative dentistry treatments.
Clean Your Tongue
Oral care is not limited to brushing your pearly whites. You also have to take some time cleaning your tongue as well. Remember, plaque can also accumulate on your tongue and cause bad breath and gum diseases. Give your tongue a gentle scrub every time you brush your teeth.
Proper oral hygiene is often taught at an early age by parents, and these mistakes become apparent because parents themselves are unaware of the best practices. That’s why there should be a call for dental professionals to be more proactive when it comes to imparting dental knowledge to their patients.