Dental hygiene is essential for not just your teeth, but also for keeping your gums healthy.
Poor or inconsistent oral care and unhealthy lifestyle habits increase your risk of developing gum disease. Here are 5 ways to maintain healthy gums.
1. Brush With Fluoride
There is a good reason why most kinds of toothpaste contain fluoride.
As you age, your tooth enamel becomes weaker. Fluoride reverses enamel erosion and fights bacteria that feed plaque.
Be sure to brush your teeth in the morning and evening with fluoride toothpaste. This simple part of your oral care routine will protect your teeth and gums against harmful bacteria.
2. Use Proper Brushing Technique
If you hold your toothbrush at a 90-degree angle, you will miss areas of your teeth. Hold your brush against your gumline at a 45-degree angle to clean hard-to-reach surfaces where tartar builds up. Hold your brush vertically or downward to brush the inner surfaces of your top and bottom teeth.
Always use gentle pressure when brushing your teeth and gumline.
3. Choose a Therapeutic Mouthrinse
Mouthwash or mouth rinse is available in two variations: therapeutic and cosmetic.
Cosmetic mouthwashes only freshen breath temporarily, while therapeutic mouthwashes fight bad bacteria directly.
Antibacterial mouthwashes boost your gum health by eliminating the bacteria that contribute to gum disease and tooth decay. A reliable mouthwash will feature the ADA (American Dental Association) Seal of Acceptance.
4. Floss at Least Once Daily
Even with the best brushing habits, your toothbrush cannot access every part of your teeth. Flossing at the end of each day is key to removing any food and plaque that are caught between teeth. Without daily flossing, plaque can harden into tartar, which eventually leads to tooth decay.
Gently thread dental floss around each side of every tooth down to the gumline to clean your mouth thoroughly.
You should also floss after eating foods that stick between your teeth to slow plaque buildup.
5. Get Dental Cleanings for Healthy Gums
Even if you have a perfect oral hygiene routine, getting a dental cleaning at least twice yearly is crucial to your oral health.
Your dentist can rid your teeth of any tartar buildup and catch a condition such as gingivitis in an early, treatable stage.
Taking excellent care of your teeth and gums is the best way to prevent serious dental health issues such as periodontitis. Along with your daily oral hygiene practices, be sure to get your teeth professionally cleaned at least twice per year.
Is it time for your next checkup? HomeCare Dentists provides mobile dental services for seniors throughout Southern California. Contact us to book your next appointment today.