You might recognize that keeping your smile requires two things – consistently good hygiene, and regular preventive care from your dentist. However, you might not realize just how closely the two are tied, or how hygiene at home should be an extension of what your dentist does for your smile during your checkups and cleanings. Good hygiene makes your routine dental visits easier and more convenient, and helps you avoid the need for more extensive follow-up treatment the next time you visit. To that end, we explore a few important things you should be doing at home, between your routine checkup and cleaning appointments.
Daily “checkups and cleanings” at home
The practice of brushing your teeth twice a day and flossing at least once is more than just good hygiene advice. It’s a form of preventive dentistry all its own. Cleaning your teeth every day is essential to preventing the buildup of dental plaque, which is a product of oral bacteria, food particles, and more. As you brush and floss, you should also carefully inspect your teeth and gums for any signs of change, such as discoloration in a tooth or in your gums. Be sure to clean every surface of your teeth, especially along your gum line, to remove all traces of plaque before it can harden into tartar.
Eating a diet that supports healthy teeth
Even if you know to avoid eating too much sugar to reduce your risks of cavities, you might not realize that everything else you eat also plays a role in your oral health. In some cases, it’s an essential role. For instance, your healthy tooth structure and the enamel that surrounds it rely on a healthy supply of minerals and nutrients, like calcium. Eating a well-balanced diet, with plenty of fruits and vegetables, can help ensure that your teeth have all of the nutrients they need to remain strong and healthy.
Avoiding things that damage your teeth
Sticking to a routine of good dental hygiene is one of the most important things you can do for your smile between visits to your dentist. However, keeping your teeth clean isn’t the only way to protect them. Things that you might not realize are a threat, such as chewing on ice or using your teeth to open things, can expose them to undue levels of pressure that can harm their healthy structures. If you grind your teeth constantly, you might also risk damaging your teeth, and may need treatment to help you stop.
Schedule your next checkup and cleaning
Keeping up with good hygiene between checkups and cleanings is essential to keeping your smile healthy, and as a result, avoiding the need for more extensive dental treatment. To learn more, schedule an appointment with Dr. Smith and our team by calling Pecan Tree Dental in Grand Prairie, TX, today at (972) 262-5111.