As an adult, you are responsible for your own oral health. That means regular trips to the dentist, brushing twice a day, and flossing daily. It also means being mindful of what you eat and drink and how it affects your teeth. With a little care and attention, you can have a healthy smile that will last a lifetime. Here’s what you need to know about keeping your teeth healthy as an adult.
See Your Dentist Regularly
One of the most important things you can do for your teeth is to see your local dentist, like Mill Creek Dental, regularly. Depending on your individual oral health needs, that may mean every six months or once a year. But even if you don’t have any major dental problems, it’s still important to see your dentist at least once a year for a cleaning and checkup. During this appointment, your dentist will remove any built-up plaque and tartar on your teeth and check for signs of tooth decay or gum disease.
Brush Twice Daily
You probably learned how to brush your teeth when you were a kid, but it’s worth taking a refresher course on proper brushing techniques as an adult. When you brush, be sure to use fluoride toothpaste and a soft-bristled toothbrush. Hold the toothbrush against your teeth at a 45-degree angle and use gentle circular motions. Be sure to brush on all surfaces of your teeth, including the front, back, top, and chewing surfaces. And don’t forget to brush your tongue! Brushing twice daily is key to removing plaque and bacteria from your mouth and preventing tooth decay.
Floss Every Day
In addition to brushing twice daily, you also need to floss at least once a day. Flossing helps remove plaque and bacteria from between your teeth which your toothbrush can’t reach. When you floss, be sure to use 18-24 inches of floss so that you have enough to wrap around each finger. Gently insert the floss between each tooth using a back-and-forth motion before curving it into a C shape against the side of each tooth. Use gentle up-and-down motions to clean the sides of each tooth before moving on to the next one.
Be Mindful of What You Eat & Drink
What you eat and drink can have a big impact on your oral health—for better or for worse. To keep your teeth healthy, it’s important to limit sugary snacks and drinks as well as acidic foods that can erode tooth enamel. It’s also important not to smoke or chew tobacco products as they can lead to gum disease and other dental problems. Try to eat a balanced diet with plenty of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and low-fat dairy products instead. And when you do indulge in sugary snacks or acidic drinks, be sure to brush afterward!
Taking care of your teeth isn’t just something kids have to do—it’s something adults need to do too! By seeing your dentist regularly, brushing twice daily with fluoride toothpaste, flossing at least once a day, eating a balanced diet, and being mindful of what you eat and drink, you can keep your teeth healthy throughout adulthood. A little time spent now will pay off in the long run!