September 15, 2021
October is approaching quickly, which means that National Dental Hygiene Month will be here before you know it! Although you should be practicing good oral hygiene year-round, October is the perfect time to be more aware of your dental care. So, in honor of this special time of the year, celebrate by incorporating the following oral hygiene tips into your everyday routine.
Brush Your Teeth Before Going to Bed
Everyone knows to brush their teeth at least twice a day for two minutes each time. Unfortunately, most people still neglect their nighttime brushing right before bed. Plaque, bacteria, food particles, and other debris accumulate in your mouth throughout the day. If you fail to eliminate it, it can lead to decay, cavities, or even gum disease.
Use a Proper Brushing Technique
Did you know that the way you brush is just as important as how often you do it? In fact, doing it poorly can do more harm than good for your smile! Using a proper brushing technique is the only way to remove plaque effectively.
Here’s what to do:
- Place your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle to your gums
- Gently move the toothbrush in circular motions over the outer surfaces of the teeth
- To clean the inner surfaces, tilt the brush vertically and make several up-and-down strokes
Don’t Neglect Your Tongue
After brushing your teeth, don’t forget to clean your tongue as well. This step is often overlooked, but it’s crucial to keep your mouth healthy! Plaque, food particles, and bacteria can easily get trapped in the grooves and crevices on your tongue. Unless you clean it, it can lead to bad breath and other oral health problems.
Use Fluoride Toothpaste
If you’ve ever walked down the oral care aisle at your local store, then you’re familiar with the endless varieties of toothpaste available. But no matter which type you choose, always make sure it contains fluoride! It’s an essential mineral that provides a protective barrier for your teeth, fighting off germs that can lead to decay.
Make Flossing a Daily Habit
Many people skip flossing because they’re in a hurry or because it makes their gums bleed. While it might seem harmless to forego the floss, it’s actually just as important as brushing. Not only does it eliminate any food stuck between your teeth, but it also helps stimulate the gums, reduce plaque, and minimize inflammation in the area.
Visit Your Dentist Regularly
Even if you’re an avid brusher and flosser, you must see your dentist at least twice a year for cleanings and checkups. Routine visits are essential as they allow your dentist to detect, treat, or prevent any oral health issues that can turn into severe complications down the line. Plus, they’ll professionally clean your teeth and ensure your smile is looking as beautiful as ever!
Next month, try to be more aware of your oral health. By incorporating the tips outlined above into your routine, you can maintain a strong, healthy smile that lasts a lifetime!
About the Author
Dr. John Moneyhun earned his Doctor of Dental Medicine at the Medical University of South Carolina in 2016. He enjoys working in tandem with his patients to maintain optimal oral health! By educating his patients, Dr. Moneyhun helps them make informed and confident choices about their dental care. For more oral hygiene tips, visit our website or call (864) 457-3901.
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