You may not always realize how certain dental habits can affect your smile, but it’s important to realize the best ways to take care of your teeth and gums so you can keep your natural smile for a lifetime! Whether it’s summer vacation or it’s time for the holidays, your Montclair dentist wants you to know how your oral hygiene routine and certain habits relate to your overall dental health.
Choose Your Toothbrush Wisely
Choosing the right toothbrush goes beyond picking your favorite color. When you want the best cleaning, you’ll want to find a toothbrush that has soft, gentle bristles. It may seem like rougher toothbrush bristles are the ones that will clean better, but your teeth are more sensitive than meets the eye, so you’ll want to treat them with the best care possible.
Softer bristles are also far gentler on your gums, which can easily bleed by aggressive brushing and lack of proper care. When you do brush your teeth, it’s supposed to be an easy, but thorough scrubbing in a circular motion to ensure you’re reaching all the right areas to clean. Don’t hesitate to ask us about any recommendations for the best toothbrush for your smile.
Don’t Underestimate the Benefits of a Mouth Guard and Night Guard
All professional athletes wear the necessary gear to protect themselves when participating in their preferred sport. This should also translate to everyone! No matter if you’re playing for fun or you’re playing professionally, it’s extremely important to wear the protective gear – like mouthguards – to lower your chances of experiencing a dental emergency. You could suffer from cuts, bruises, lacerations, or even chipped or lost teeth.
Another type of guard that protects your smile is a nightguard, worn when you’re sleeping if you tend to grind your teeth unconsciously. If you’ve been waking up with headaches, or if your teeth have been more sensitive than usual, you could be unknowingly grinding your teeth as you sleep throughout the night. This could weaken your enamel, expose the nerves and sensitive areas of your teeth and cause cavities, infections, or worse. Schedule a consultation with us to see if you’ve been wearing down your smile.
Keep Your Utensils and Toothbrush to Yourself
While sharing is caring, utensils are something you should avoid sharing too often. If you have children, it may seem natural and parent-like to put a small bite of your food on your utensil before sharing it with your baby, but the mixing of bacteria can easily get your child sick. Everyone has their own bacteria, and unfortunately, you could pass yours along that your child can’t handle.
This sharing technique is also applicable for toothbrushes. Everyone has their own brush for a reason! The bristles are covered in your bacteria, so mixing them with someone else’s could get one of you sick faster than you realize. This is also why we suggest switching out your toothbrush after you’re sick – that bad bacteria is all over your toothbrush, so be sure to start fresh after you’ve gotten better!
There are more habits that can harm your smile than you think, which is why your Montclair dentist is here to help! Give our office a call at (703) 670-4838 for more helpful tips on caring for your overall dental health and how we can be an integral part of your smile.