Here is my promised follow up to last week’s blog post about healthy diet and healthy teeth. My tips are a version of the visual here, expanding to really explain the WHY’s behind those basic principles.
As much as I’d love to hear you tell me, as your Boise dentist, that you have given up eating and drinking sugary foods and are embracing a healthy, whole food diet – I know I probably won’t be hearing those words too often.
So here are 5 more tips that you can do since we all know you are still going to eat sugar.
What to Do When You Eat Sugar
Since all food has some sugar in it, the bacteria will still have something to metabolize no matter what you do with your diet. So here’s what you can do to balance that out.
Eat Sugar Quickly
I know you are going to eat sugar anyway, so just promise to eat it quickly! And then brush, floss, or rinse with water afterward. This will help to minimize how much sugar actually sticks to your teeth.
Flossing scrapes the bacteria off your teeth and gets it out of your mouth (along with any acetic acid that it has created or would have created if it remained there long enough to metabolize more sugar). And it also brings oxygen to the area between your teeth which greatly limits the amount of bacteria that can grow there.
Brush 2x/Day for 2 minutes
Brushing definitely helps with the freshness of your breath, as well as the whiteness and look of your teeth. This is important but it doesn’t do as much cavity prevention as you might think. So brush often but don’t depend on it alone.
Rinse After Every Meal
Rinsing your mouth with water after you’ve eaten something, and drinking water throughout the day, will help to clean the surfaces of your teeth of excess food and acid.
Regular Dental Check Ups
Even doing this all to a T will still not be enough to prevent every possible issue with oral health that can come up for an individual. That’s where I come in. A dental appointment isn’t just to get those pearly whites cleaned – although I DO get to places you can’t, even with floss, and I do a more thorough job of it with my instruments. That appointment is for the overall health of your teeth and mouth and to do treatments as necessary.
Yeah, this isn’t anything new or earth shattering. But maybe it’s been framed in a new way for you. Maybe this time you’ll take on that additional personal responsibility (not to mention parental responsibility if you have children) and make these things habits from here on out.
If you do make these into habits, perhaps our next appointment will be even more pleasant than it usually is – or at least faster.