Adjusting to the “new normal” has brought a lot of new and challenging adjustments to our day-to-day lives. For some, the biggest challenge is adapting to fewer child care options; for others, it’s creating a home office. And for all of us, it’s learning how to stay connected without being physically present.
Even in the most uncertain of times, the importance of our oral health remains constant. Dental practices are reopening across the country to bring patients back into the dental chair—but what if you are unable to come into the office, or don’t feel comfortable traveling outside of the home yet?
The good news is that there are plenty of easy, effective ways to keep up with your oral hygiene while at home. Here are our best tips for keeping your mouth clean and healthy between prolonged dentist visits.
Increase Your Water Intake
Regular water intake is not only good for your overall health, but it also improves your oral health. Drinking fluoride-enhanced water is an easy way to fight back against cavities and strengthen your teeth. That’s because fluoride interacts with the calcium and phosphate within your enamel, creating a protective barrier against decay (and the eventual cavities that come along with it).
Water also helps flush away bacteria, stray food particles, and acids that can contribute to enamel erosion. And if you suffer from dry mouth, drinking water is the best way to supplement low saliva production—a leading cause of tooth decay.
Brush Twice Daily
Your mouth is home to a massive group of 20 million bacteria that reproduce every five hours! Of course, not all bacteria are bad—some strains of bacteria actually help keep your mouth clean and healthy. But if left unchecked, the harmful bacteria can multiply and offset the balance between good and bad, opening the door to bad breath, tooth decay, and cavities.
Dental experts across the board agree that brushing teeth twice a day is optimal for tooth and gum health. Regular brushing will eliminate leftover debris from your meals while discouraging bad bacteria from multiplying. As an added benefit, the bristles from your toothbrush help stimulate blood flow to your gums, giving an extra line of defense against gum disease.
Floss Between Brushings
It’s the age-old question that every dentist asks: “How often are you flossing?” This is one of the toughest habits to get into, but creating a routine of flossing every day can have serious benefits for the health of your gums. Gum health certainly isn’t something to take lightly: periodontal (gum) disease causes receding gums and tooth loss, and has even been linked to more serious conditions such as heart disease, rheumatoid arthritis, and diabetes.
Flossing once a day—ideally, between each brushing—will help fight back against plaque buildup that sits between your teeth and prevent tartar from forming along your gum line. It will also get rid of any pesky bits of food that may get missed by your toothbrush, eliminating bacteria and keeping your mouth clean.
Reach Out Today
Hinsdale Dental is now open and scheduling routine appointments—but we know that not all of our patients will be able to come to the office right away. If you’re at a higher risk of getting sick or simply aren’t comfortable with an in-office visit yet, don’t let your oral health fall to the wayside. The best thing that you can do is make sure that your at-home oral hygiene routine is as robust as possible while at home. And when the time is right for you to come back to the office, we’ll be ready and waiting!Return to Blog