Oral Hygiene Practices That Will Keep Your Mouth Healthy
Keeping your teeth strong involves a pretty strict routine. However, once you get used to doing all of the essential parts of keeping your teeth and gums healthy, the routine will become a breeze. Here are some of the best oral hygiene habits you should consider adopting as part of your routine.
You may not know it, but you might be brushing your teeth the wrong way. However, incorrectly brushing them is better than not trying at all. To properly brush your teeth, you first need to purchase a soft-bristled brush. Apply the toothpaste and brush the outside and the inside of your teeth, making circular motions. Don't forget to brush your tongue and gums as well. This process should last about three minutes, so set your timer. Brush this way two times each day, usually when you wake up and before you go to bed.
When you're done using your toothbrush, rinse it off and let it air dry. If you've been using the same toothbrush for three months, toss it out and get a new one. Additionally, if you're recovering from an illness, purchase a new toothbrush so you don't spread any germs.
Before going out to buy toothpaste, check out what you have in your cabinet. It's easier to purchase a new toothpaste rather than digging through drawers to locate a tube. However, you may come across a tube, which may have you wondering, "Does toothpaste expire?" The short answer is no, as long as it's only two years past the expiration date. However, if you have out-of-date toothpaste, consider throwing it away simply because the ingredients may be less effective and the flavor may be different.
Before you brush your teeth, you should floss. However, you only need to floss once each day, but you can do it more often if you want. If you choose only to floss once, it's better to do it at night because everything you were eating throughout the day is stuck in your teeth. If you let the food particles remain between your teeth, you're putting yourself at risk for plaque and tartar buildup, cavities, tooth loss and gingivitis.
Here are a few flossing tips to follow. Wrap the floss around your middle fingers and use your pointer fingers and thumbs to move the floss between each tooth. As you go from tooth to tooth, adjust the floss so you're using a clean piece between every tooth. Most importantly, make sure you're flossing down to the gums to remove any hard-to-reach food particles.
If conventional flossing is difficult for you, consider trying flossers. When using a flosser, you'll have to wipe the string off each time before moving to the next tooth. However, if you have tightly spaced teeth, flossers are more efficient at getting between each tooth.
Tongue Scraping Procedure
Tongue scraping can't replace brushing, but adding it to your routine can be quite beneficial. Using a tongue scraper can help remove bacteria and dead cells from your tongue. It also improves taste and reduces bad breath.
If you want to get rid of your morning breath and keep it away all day long, you need to scrape more than once daily. Since bacteria that cause odor builds up after each meal, it's best if you scrape every time you eat. However, if you don't want to scrape your tongue that often, you should at least do it after you brush in the morning to avoid a buildup of bacteria.
Since mouthwash freshens your breath while removing plaque and gingivitis that often leads to cavities, you should add it to your dental routine. The best time to use mouthwash is after you've flossed, brushed and scraped your tongue. Use the recommended amount and swish it in your mouth for about 30 seconds before you spit it out.
If you include these oral hygiene habits in your daily routine (and go to the dentist for regular checkups), you'll have strong, healthy teeth for years to come. Adding a few small changes to your dental routine can make a huge difference.