March 20th is an important day for two reasons. It’s the first day of spring, plus, it’s World Oral Health Day (WOHD). This day of dental health awareness began in 2013, when the FDI World Dental Federation decided to create a day dedicated to optimal oral health for patients all over the planet.
Living Mouth Smart
To promote oral health for our own patients, we’ve created this list of ways to keep your smile healthy.
1. Instill Habits in Children Early
Children establish habits very early in life. If they start taking good care of their pearly whites at a young age, chances are they will keep the ball rolling through their entire lives. For more tips to get your kids to prioritize their dental health, check out our recent post from National Children’s Dental Health Month.
2. Get Regular Dental Check-Ups
Visiting the dentist every six months is invaluable to your dental hygiene. We all miss spots during our brushing routine, and this results in plaque hardening into tartar. Tartar can only be removed by a dental professional, so it’s important to get into the office for your twice-a-year cleanings. Additionally, many dental issues don’t have obvious symptoms, so you need to see a dentist regularly to ensure your pearly whites are in working order.
3. Protect Teeth During Sports
When you participate in high-impact sports and activities, your teeth are vulnerable. This is especially the case when falls, blows to the head, and flying equipment are likely. So be smart and protect your smile with a mouthguard. You can thank us later.
4. Don’t Smoke
Bad breath, oral cancer, bone loss, and gum disease—those are just a few of the dental complications smokers can expect.
5. Use Fluoride Safely
Fluoride helps to fortify your enamel, and a little bit goes a long way toward strengthening your teeth against acid. Fluoride is especially important for children under six, but be careful. In too high doses, fluoride can be dangerous. Safe amounts vary based on weight and age, so be sure to consult your dentist on the proper amounts for you and your children.
6. Avoid Sugary Foods
Eating too much sugar feeds the bacteria that attacks your enamel, causing tooth decay. The best practice is to cut down on sugar as much as possible. If you do give in and appease your sweet tooth, make an effort to clean your teeth as soon as you can.
7. Brush Twice a Day and Floss Daily
This is an essential part of the package that is good oral health. Brush your teeth twice a day and floss them daily, and you’ll be making strides toward a healthy set of teeth. Twice a day is sufficient for most people, but an extra brush after a sugary meal is always welcome!
A Healthy Smile for Life
Working these habits into your everyday life will go a long way toward ensuring that you keep your pearly whites healthy for life.