To further continue the theme of bad habits that damage dental health, today I will address some simple habits that are taken for granted daily, but have adverse effects on dental health.
- NOT FLOSSING – Brushing your teeth twice a day is important, but many patients don’t realize that flossing at least once a day is just as critical to achieving and maintaining a healthy smile. Flossing removes the cavity-causing bacteria left behind from food particles that get stuck between teeth. “Although bleeding and irritation sometimes can occur when you first start flossing, it’s important to keep at it. Your gums will toughen up and your oral health will be better for it.
- Brushing too soon after eating
Consuming acidic foods and beverages, such as sports and energy drinks, citrus fruits, wine, and tomatoes, can erode tooth enamel—the glossy outer layer of the tooth. Brushing your teeth too soon after eating and drinking these items can cause more damage, because you are essentially brushing the acid into the teeth, not getting rid of it. Instead, you should rinse your mouth with water after consuming acidic foods and beverages and wait at least 30 minutes before brushing your pearly whites!
- Not replacing your toothbrush often enough
Not only are old toothbrushes ineffective, but they also harbour harmful bacteria that can cause infections. Toothbrushes should be changed every three to four months. It’s also important to change your toothbrush after you’ve had a cold.
- Excessively bleaching your teeth
Overzealous bleaching can cause your teeth to look unnaturally white and increase tooth sensitivity. Before using an at-home bleaching product, talk to your dentist. He or she can advise you on proper use of these products, as well as which type of bleaching system will provide you with the best results.
- Using a hard-bristled toothbrush
A hard-bristled toothbrush, coupled with an aggressive brushing technique can cause irreversible damage to your gums. Use a soft toothbrush and gently brush your teeth at a 45-degree angle, in a circular or vertical motion. Using a back-and-forth, sawing motion causes the gums to recede, and can expose the roots of the teeth, making teeth extremely sensitive.
I wish each and every reader a happy and prosperous 2016.
Dr Keith John
Clinic: SVG Dental Corporation
Telephone: 784-456- 2220