What are your 2018 Resolutions?
With the new year right around the corner, now is the perfect time to start thinking about what your New Year’s resolutions will be this time around. What better resolution could there be than making good on some simple resolutions that will help to keep your teeth and gums healthy.
1. Keep your regular dental checkups with us
Keeping your routine visits to our office can help prevent oral disease, reveal existing or potential problems or just give your teeth a fresh cleaning. When our hygienist cleans your teeth, the plaque buildup is removed.
Not only do regular dental visits protect the health of your teeth and gums, they can save you money in the long run. Waiting to treat issues could mean more extensive, and expensive, procedures that may be necessary.
2. Brush AND floss your teeth
Your toothbrush is not able to get perfectly in-between your teeth to remove food particles and plaque. This leaves your teeth vulnerable to decay and your gums vulnerable to infection and eventually gum disease.
Remember, you should be brushing your teeth twice a day for two minutes each time. Floss your teeth at least once a day – twice is better!
3. Improve your brushing and flossing techniques
Are you brushing and flossing your teeth correctly? You could be missing some key areas of your teeth where plaque builds up. Next time you are in to see us, show our hygienist how you brush and floss. If something isn’t quite right, we’ll show you how!
4. Eat a Healthy Diet Rich in Vitamins and Minerals
If your nutrition is out of whack with too much fast food, processed food or skipping meals altogether, symptoms can appear on your tongue, gums, teeth and the soft tissues in your mouth. If something becomes loose or sore or just looks different inside your mouth, it could be your body asking for a nutrient it is lacking.
These vitamins and minerals from these foods can help keep your teeth and gums healthy:
Calcium – milk, yogurt, cheese, canned sardines & spinach
Magnesium – halibut, artichokes, broccoli, green beans & cashews
Vitamin B2 – almonds, kale & lentils
Vitamin B3 – avocados, potatoes, ground beef & shrimp
Vitamin B6 – bananas, watermelon, tomatoes & chicken
Vitamin B12 – poultry, fish, shellfish, meats & eggs
Vitamins C & A – mango, oranges & leafy green vegetables
Vitamin D – eggs, milk, salmon, tuna & trout
While this is an abbreviated list, we would encourage you to look into foods that will give you the most minerals and vitamins that help to keep your mouth healthy.
5. Quit Smoking
Smoking is a bad habit. When you smoke, you double your risk for gum disease and increase the likelihood of tooth discoloration, cavities, gum recession, not to mention the threat of throat, lung and oral cancers.
6. Drink More Water
Just like with your diet, if you add more water to your diet, you’ll see benefits to your dental health, as well as your overall health.
It’s recommended that you drink eight 8-ounce glasses of water each day. The health benefits of staying hydrated are many:
• Keeps your energy levels up
• Aids in weight loss
• Helps with kidney function
And so much more! If you suffer from dry mouth, drinking water consistently throughout the day helps to produce saliva which protects your tooth enamel.
8. Complete or Get the Dental Treatment You Have Put Off
Putting off dental treatments that we have recommended only make things worse, and more expensive. Have you put off that filling or root canal? Get the treatment taken care of at the start of the year.
9. Stop the Habits that Are Bad for Your Teeth
Biting your fingernails
Opening bottles with your teeth
Opening anything with your teeth
Playing sports without a mouth guard
10. If You Grind Your Teeth at Night, Get a Mouth Guard
If you wake up in the morning with a headache or sore jaw, you may be clenching or grinding your teeth while you are asleep. Grinding your teeth can cause them to chip or crack. A night guard worn at bedtime will cushion your teeth and prevent any further damage.
Try to incorporate all or some of these recommendations into your 2018 New Year Resolutions. Good Luck!