Ever had an elderly neighbor or grandparent tell you how much they had wished they could go back and take better care of their teeth? Sadly, even in this modern age it can be all too easy to neglect our oral care between working long days and making sure others are taken care of. Sometimes you may even feel lucky if you are able to get a little brushing in at all.
However, good dental hygiene is not something to neglect and should be taught right from childhood.
It All Comes Down To Plaque
When it comes to oral hygiene, it all comes down to keeping plaque at bay. Plaque is a slimy and fuzzy-like coating that collects on your teeth throughout the day. The problem is plaque gives bacteria a place to thrive and create a large variety of issues if left ignored. Luckily, plaque can be removed through brushing and flossing. Sadly, this plaque grows pretty quickly which is why it is recommended that you brush and floss twice every day and use mouth wash at least once a day for extra protection.
If the plaque is not brushed off in time though, then it can harden and turn into tartar and lead to gum disease.
What To Know About Tartar And Gum Disease
Tartar can began to form in just a little over a day and cannot be so easily brushed off. Once tartar has become hardened to your teeth, it begins to harbor bacteria until it can be professionally removed by your dentist. As the bacteria starts to thrive and worsen, it will then lead to gingivitis which will cause your gums to become irritated and sore. Once the gingivitis begins to progress into periodontitis also known as gum disease.
Once gum disease has begun, you can expect to see infected pockets form around your teeth which promotes tooth decay and loss. If that wasn’t scary enough, gum disease has even been linked to heart disease when left untreated.
So how do you take the proper steps to prevent plaque and tartar buildup?
- Brush your teeth twice a day for at least 2 minutes each with a fluoride toothpaste
- Use floss everyday at least once a day
- Drink plenty of water to help dislodge debris and food bits from your teeth
- Limit the amount of sweets, sugary foods and drinks you consume each day
- Limit the amount of alcohol you consume
- Do not smoke or take the steps necessary to quit as soon as possible
- Make sure you visit your dentist regularly
Seeing your dentist on a regular lesson is one of the most important things you can do to better your dental health. Your dentist can detect any oral issues early on so that you can get problems fixed up quickly and even help ease your pain when serious damage has already occurred. So don’t hesitate to visit your dentist today!