Is Dental Hygiene Important for Overall Health and Wellness?
by Sharon Williams
Good health is the accumulation of a healthy diet, regular exercise and getting enough rest. It also involves good emotional and environmental health. While focusing on physical and emotional health, most people tend to forget about their dental health. It is important to understand that oral hygiene has a huge impact on the overall health and wellness of an individual.
Relationship Between Oral Health and Wellness
The mouth acts as the gateway to the rest of your bodily health, which means that poor oral care will not just affect the appearance of your smile but also lead to serious health conditions like cardiovascular disease, dementia and stroke. The following dental care tips will help you improve oral hygiene and your overall health.
- Visit the Orthodontist Annually
You can visit the dentist for check-ups, getting decayed teeth repaired and for general dental treatments but it is important to see the orthodontist also — at least once a year. A dentist is a highly trained professional who is qualified to look at your dental needs, however, they do not receive significant training in dealing with orthodontic treatments. On the other hand, an orthodontist can provide excellent orthodontic treatments as they have three years of additional education. In fact, they are the only specialists who can give you an accurate and informed opinion on the best orthodontic options for your teeth and deal with difficult oral issues to help you achieve the perfect smile and a good bite.
- Eat the Right Food
Eat a variety of foods, however, limit foods containing sugar and starches. Avoid hard candy and sticky food as they remain stuck in your teeth for a long time. Always brush after snacks, especially after eating sugary or starchy snacks like raisins or potato chips to avoid tooth decay.
- Brush Regularly
Brush your teeth for at least two minutes to properly clean them. It is the recommended time by the dental professionals. Apply the proper motion and pressure while brushing. Using a back-and-forth motion or too much pressure can actually harm your oral health as it can wear down your tooth enamel. Instead, use gentle circular motions to effectively brush away plaque.
- Floss Each Day
One of the most overlooked oral hygiene habits is flossing. It is extremely important to remove plaque and bacteria that hide in the hard-to-reach areas such as the back of the teeth and gum line. Remember to floss even if you have clear braces.
Dental Care for Braces
You need to take extra care to maintain oral hygiene if you use Invisalign braces.
Here are five oral tips to help you take care of your braces.
- Replace the Toothbrush More Frequently
If you wear dental braces, replace the toothbrush more often since there would be wear and tear on the brush from the wires and brackets of the braces. Ensure you get a soft-bristled toothbrush or an electric toothbrush.
- Use the Necessary Cleaning Tools
It can be quite a challenge to clean out all the nooks and corners between the teeth and the brackets and wires, especially in the back of the mouth. Ask your orthodontist which cleaning tools can help you keep your braces and teeth clean. For example, you can use inter-dental brushes to clean between your brackets and wires before you floss and brush. Even a floss threader is a good idea, which can be used as a needle and a thread to get the floss into hard to reach places.
- Be Gentle on the Gums
Though it is important to clean gums, make sure you are not too rough on them. Gently work the floss up and down but don’t jam it in into the gums. Any rough handling will cause irritation to the gums, cause inflammation or lead to infections.
- Use an Antibacterial Mouthwash
Tooth decay isn’t uncommon when you wear braces, but you can avoid them by using fluoride toothpaste and an antibacterial mouthwash.
- Clean the Removable Invisalign Tray or Retainer
Even if you brush and floss regularly, it is important to clean the Invisalign tray or retainer. Use the inter-dental brush to get rid of big food particles stuck in the arch wire and around the brackets. Clean the brackets carefully and ensure you don’t miss any spots. Clean the Invisalign tray or retainer after each meal.
Visit an orthodontist to understand more about dental care or cosmetic dentistry services like teeth straightening. Taking care of your teeth will ensure your overall wellness and health.
Author: Sharon William's day job is to handle digital marketing for Koch Orthodontics in Lawrenceville, GA. With a flair for creating compelling content that clears the clutter and connects with the audience in an instant, she writes about dental topics to educate and help her readers. She truly believes that a genuine smile can win a million hearts and talks to her readers about improving their smiles and overall dental health, as well as enhancing their overall lifestyle. In her free time, she likes to organize small meets in her neighborhood where she brings people together to discuss various topics that she writes about.