5 Oral Hygiene Tips for Adults from Our Grant Park Dentist

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5 Oral Hygiene Tips for Adults from Our Grant Park Dentist

As our bodies age, so do our mouths. While tooth loss may seem inevitable for adults, but it certainly doesn’t have to be! As long as a person decides to take care of his or her mouth properly, the likelihood of maintaining a complete and beautiful smile is much greater.

Unfortunately, good oral hygiene isn’t as simple as brushing and flossing every day—especially for adults. Gaining and maintaining oral health takes determination, just like any other good thing. And we promise the effort is worth it.

To decrease your risk of tooth loss, cavities, and gum disease, consider these five tips:

1.    Brush with fluoride toothpaste and drink fluoridated water

Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral that helps strengthen dental enamel. Today, we find it in toothpaste and tap water. Though most people have become accustomed to drinking bottled water, tap water may offer more benefits.

In 1945, the city of Grand Rapids, Michigan was the first to fluoridate their water. The result? Fewer cavities among school-aged children. Fluoride provides the same benefits for adults! Now, fluoride is found in almost every city’s tap water. Although there is such a thing as too much fluoride, if you drink the recommended amount of water per day, it’s not something to worry about.

Fluoride toothpaste is another way to strengthen dental enamel and prevent oral health problems. Talk to your dentist about how much fluoride your teeth can handle.

2.    Avoid tobacco products

Smoking and chewing tobacco have serious oral and overall health consequences. Tobacco products aren’t just addictive, they are filled with dangerous chemicals that create an imbalance of bacteria in the mouth. Consequently, tobacco users are at a much higher risk of gum disease, oral cancer, and tooth loss.

Quit using tobacco as soon as possible. There are so many options besides cold turkey! Patches, gum, and nicotine pouches are all helpful ways to wean yourself off the drug. Don’t wait until it is too late. You and your loved ones will be so happy you didn’t.

3.    Eat healthy foods

Junk food, sugary drinks, and carbs can lead to continuous oral health problems like cavities and gum disease. Rather than trying to avoid these foods, try adding healthier ones to your day. For example, you can have a piece of chocolate after lunch, but eat almonds with it. Changing habits usually works better when we think of it as adding, rather than subtracting. This way, you are more likely to eat less chocolate and get the nutrients from the almonds.

A mouth-healthy diet consists of the followings:

  • Limited fruits
  • Veggies (especially leafy ones)
  • Protein
  • Calcium that contains little to no sugar
  • Water

4.    Stay hydrated

Drinking plenty of water throughout the day is essential to maintaining a healthy mouth. Along with cleaning the mouth of food particles and debris, water helps with saliva production. Saliva is an important part of keeping the bacteria balanced to avoid gum disease and cavities.

Patients who suffer from dry mouth should be especially dedicated to drinking enough water. Sugar-free gum and switching medications may also be helpful.

5.    Visit the dentist at least every six months

Patients of all ages should attend regular dental cleaning and exam appointments every six months. These give your dentist the opportunity to spot and treat oral health problems before they become more serious.

Professional dental cleanings are gentle and thorough. A dental hygienist can reach the parts of the mouth (usually the molars) that may don’t get cleaned quite as often as they should. He or she will also remove any plaque or tartar sitting around the gum line.

For more tips from our Grant Park dentist….

Contact our friendly dental team today at 404-328-7177 to schedule an initial consultation with Dr. Abbey J. Lee.

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