Taking care of you and your family’s teeth is high on your list of priorities. You know that your oral health is not only important for your mouth, but your whole body too.
You feel that you and your family do practice good oral hygiene habits, however there are few areas where you’re possibly lacking. Your routine could use an update.
What do you need to do to improve your oral health? Here are 10 tips for improving your oral hygiene.
What is Good Oral Hygiene?
Good oral hygiene is taking care of your teeth and gums to prevent conditions and diseases not only in your mouth, but throughout your body. There is more to a good oral hygiene routine than just brushing your teeth twice a day.
The American Dental Association (ADA) lists their recommendation for a good oral hygiene routine as brushing your teeth at least twice a day using a soft bristled tooth brush and an ADA approved fluoride toothpaste.
They also suggest flossing between the teeth and rinsing with a dental mouthwash once a day.
Other good oral hygiene habits include eating a healthy diet and visiting your dentist regularly for check-ups.
Why is it Important to Have Good Oral Hygiene?
The health of your teeth and gums can affect more than just your mouth. Oral conditions and diseases can affect the way you eat, talk, and the health of your overall body.
A mild form of gum disease, called gingivitis, is one of the most common health issues found in the mouth. Gingivitis is caused by plaque on the teeth that aren’t removed from brushing. This can cause the area under the gums to become infected. The plaque left on your teeth can create toxins that cause your gums to become red, swollen, and often times, painful. They may also bleed when you brush or floss. At this point, your dentist should be able to treat and cure your gingivitis.
If gingivitis isn’t taken care of, it can advance into a more serious gum condition called periodontal disease. This stage of gum disease can cause your teeth to become loose and potentially fall out.
Periodontal disease may also cause weakness and bone loss in the jaw bone under your damaged teeth. Plaque that isn’t regularly removed can also cause tooth decay in the teeth or cavities.
Diseases in the Body Connected to Poor Oral Hygiene
According to Medical News Today, several studies have suggested that major diseases including Alzheimer’s, pancreatic cancer, and heart disease may be linked to gum disease. Scientists in the studies found a strong connection between inflamed gums and a possible higher risk for Alzheimer’s disease. The researchers also found having periodontitis posed an increased risk of getting pancreatic cancer.
The data collected through the research also showed a higher chance for heart disease in individuals with bleeding gums.
Other diseases in the body found to be associated with poor oral hygiene include diabetes, pneumonia, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and infertility.
Bad oral hygiene habits may also be connected to oral cancers. These are cancers of the lips, mouth, and tongue. Oral cancers are also found in the back of the mouth. This type of cancer includes the back of the tongue, back of the roof of the mouth, tonsils, and wall of the upper throat.
10 Oral Hygiene Tips
Here are the 10 recommended habits to include in your daily routine to prevent diseases associated with poor oral hygiene and gum disease-
- Brush your teeth at least twice a day using an ADA approved fluoride toothpaste.
- Use a soft toothbrush.
- Replace your toothbrush approximately every three months.
- Don’t forget to brush your tongue, or use a tongue scraper.
- Floss between all your teeth at least once a day.
- Rinse with a dental mouthwash at least once a day.
- Eat healthy foods including fresh fruits, vegetables, whole-grains, and dairy.
- Avoid sugary snacks and drinks.
- Drink plenty of water.
- Visit your dentist at least twice a year for regular check-ups and dental cleanings.
Professional Dental Visits for Improving Your Oral Hygiene
Good oral hygiene habits can not only keep your teeth and gums healthy, they may also help prevent major diseases in your body. A professional dental office, such as Signature Dental in Texas, can help you with your oral hygiene care. After a thorough dental examination and cleaning, our trained staff can give you the support you need on how you and your family can improve your oral hygiene.