You might be keeping a good fitness regimen and maintaining a well-balanced diet, but make sure that you give some attention to your oral health as well. Here are three ways you can start improving your dental health.
- Drink more water.
We all know that water is good for you – it keeps you hydrated and can keep you from overeating at meals. But drinking fluoridated water is even better, whether it’s from the tap or bottled with fluoride added to it. This mineral is excellent at aiding the prevention of cavities, and it’s been found that fluoridating the community water supply reduces tooth decay by 25 percent in both kids and adults. Additionally, drinking water helps flush away the sugars and debris that remain on your teeth after snacking or meals.
- Eat teeth-friendly foods.
Foods that contain high-quality protein, such as lean meats, eggs, fish, cheese, or dry beans are the best choices for a healthy mouth, along with whole grains, low-sugar bread and cereals, and fruits and vegetables. The American Dental Association recommends that fruits and vegetables make up about half of your plate since chewing firm, coarse, watery, and fibrous foods stimulates the flow of saliva, which facilitates digestion and reduces the amount of food debris left in your mouth after eating.
- Improve your brushing and flossing routine.
First off, make sure you have the right equipment. If you’ve been using your toothbrush for more than three or four months, it’s time to replace it. Don’t remember when you started using it? If the bristles are frayed, it’s time to replace. Speaking of bristles, many people tend to use toothbrushes with bristles that are too hard for them. This can result in damage to the teeth or gums. When you get a new toothbrush, try using a soft-bristled one that fits comfortably in your mouth, and make sure you’re not brushing too hard.
If you’re not flossing, start now! Brushing alone can’t get to all the surfaces of your teeth, where sneaky bits of food debris might remain and feed the bacteria that can do damage to your teeth. And don’t forget your tongue. Brush it or use a tongue scraper to make sure you have minty-fresh breath.