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2019 Oral Care Resolutions For A Brighter, Healthier Smile

 resolutionsThe new year is the perfect time to create resolutions for establishing healthy dental habits. Whether you resolve yourself to see a dentist regularly or improve your oral hygiene, wellness resolutions are always in season. Furthermore, the benefits of accomplishing your goals can be motivating and rewarding. Remember that consistency is a key part of achieving your best oral health this year. Start with these:

  1. Make smarter snack choices.

Certain foods can hurt your dental health while others can protect and improve it. What you choose as daily snacks can make a huge difference to your smile. If you are craving something sweet, reach for an apple instead of donuts. While they are high in sugar, apples are good for your oral health. The vitamins in this fruit promote gum health. In addition, its fiber content encourages chewing, which promotes saliva buildup that helps wash away bacteria and food particles.

Research also shows that cheese increases the pH levels in the mouth, reducing the risk of tooth decay. This dairy treat is also rich in protein and calcium that makes your tooth enamel strong. Other teeth-friendly snacks to enjoy are yogurt, celery, dark chocolate, and nuts. Stay away from carbonated drinks, refined white bread, potato chips, and alcohol to prevent plaque and cavities.

  1. Improve your daily oral care routine.

Daily brushing and flossing is a simple yet highly effective way of preventing teeth and gum disease. To make sure plaque doesn’t build up, brush in the morning and in the evening before going to bed for at least three minutes. Choose a toothbrush that has the American Dental Association (ADA) seal on the box to be sure the bristles are not too hard. It’s important that it fits your mouth size comfortably and is easy to use, whether it’s the powered or manual variety.

If you need additional help figuring out which toothbrush or toothpaste is right for you, ask your dentist or dental hygienist for some tips. They can also teach you the proper way of brushing your teeth and get around your dental concerns if you have any. Flossing is just as essential because a typical toothbrush can’t reach between the gaps of your teeth. Set a couple of minutes to floss each day to get rid of food particles from hard-to-reach areas.

  1. Correct your bite.

This year, you might want to finally correct an abnormal bite caused by thumb sucking, crooked teeth, tooth crowding, or injury. Having braces to correct any of these problems will not only enhance your smile, but most importantly, improve your oral health. There are several options for straightening your teeth. Ask your dental clinic what types of appliances they offer and choose one that fits your aesthetic preference and lifestyle.

  1. Quit using tobacco products.

You probably already know how smoking increases the risk of lung disease and different types of cancer, but have you heard that this vice also wreaks havoc on your oral health? Current medical studies suggest smoking suppresses the immune system, leaving the gums prone to infection. In fact, there is evidence showing that smokers are 50 percent more likely to develop gum disease than non-smokers. Smokers also suffer a higher risk for tooth loss due to tartar and plaque buildup that lead to tooth decay.

You can still reverse your dental problems when you stop smoking. Even limiting the amount you smoke each day can provide incremental benefits. There are nicotine replacement therapies available to help you stop. These include nicotine gums, sprays, inhalers, and lozenges. You may find that seeking a support system could aid in your journey. Your physician or dentist can help you locate a good counseling program.

  1. Limit your alcohol intake.

According to the Academy of General Dentistry, those who eat poorly, smoke, and consume excessive alcohol have increased periodontal pocketing or gum recession. Tooth decay, mouth sores, and gum disease are all much more likely for heavy drinkers, and alcohol abuse has been linked to oral cancer. Limiting your alcohol intake this year could be one of the best things you can do for your oral health.

  1. Smile brighter with pearly white teeth.

Teeth whitening has acquired enormous popularity over the recent years. It removes surface and deep stains, enhancing the appearance of your teeth. You can get over-the-counter tooth whitening products for at-home use, have one dispensed by a dentist for at-home use, or get it administered by a professional at the dental office. These products typically come in two categories – peroxide-containing bleaching agents and whitening toothpaste. Be sure to call or visit your dentist first for safety tips and recommendations.

  1. Go for a complete restorative dental work.

You don’t have to live with missing or disfigured teeth. If your choppers have suffered decay, trauma, or any medical condition, a full mouth reconstruction can help you get your smile back. Work with your dentist to develop a plan that will reduce or eliminate your pain, restore the look of your teeth, and return your ability to chew and speak. This option could be the answer to your oral health goals this 2019.

  1. Schedule your dental visits.

It’s easy to forget about your dental visits once your schedule becomes hectic, so be sure to set some time for them. Routine checkups may help reveal existing disease in its early stage or prevent dental problems in the future.

Visit your local dental office every six months. This will allow your oral care provider to monitor your condition and develop a treatment plan that suits your needs and preferences. If there is an issue that is beyond the scope of practice of your dentist, he or she may refer you to a specialist.

Many people resolve to lead a healthier lifestyle each New Year, and dental care is an important part of that. Make your resolutions attainable by taking baby steps to achieve them. Always seek the advice of a dental professional with any questions you may have regarding a treatment or medical condition.