Don’t you just love the way your teeth feel after having them professionally cleaned? How can you keep that feeling in between cleanings? They will never feel as clean as they do after a cleaning appointment with your hygienist and dentist. We can’t stress enough the importance of regular dental cleanings. The dental checkup along with the cleaning every 6 months is the best way to stay on top of your oral health. But, there are some things you can do at home to maintain that fresh, clean feeling as long as possible. In this article, your dental team at Sninski & Schmitt Family Dentistry gives you five (5) tips on keeping your teeth feeling clean between professional cleaning appointments.
Tip #1: Brush Often with the Proper Technique
We recommend that you brush your teeth at least two times a day, typically every morning and night before you go to sleep. If you want to do more, you can eliminate most bacteria from food particles and keep your teeth clean by brushing after every meal or after drinking something besides water. Even rinsing with mouthwash after eating or drinking is helpful if you can’t manage to fit in brushing during the day.
Using the proper technique to brush is important. It may take some practice but it can become a natural habit quickly.
- Use the right toothpaste and toothbrush. Your dental professional can help guide you with what is right for you.
- Keep your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle and use short circular motions, making certain that you’re brushing your teeth and not your gums.
- Do not brush aggressively or use too much pressure as this can lead to gum recession or even make your teeth porous and sensitive.
Tip #2: Floss Daily
You can’t rely on brushing alone to keep your teeth clean. The American Dental Association recommends flossing twice every day to get the tight, hard-to-reach places between your teeth. And, you should be mindful of the proper way to floss, just as you should with brushing.
- Wrap enough floss (about two inches) between your fingers and unroll a new section for each tooth.
- Keep the floss tight against each tooth to disturb the plaque without harming your gums.
- Floss the front and back of each tooth, including the last molars in your mouth.
Tip #3: Reduce the Sugar You Eat or Drink
Cutting down on the amount of sugar and soda is not only good for your teeth but also your overall health. Eating a lot of sugar makes your mouth more acidic and grows bacteria, creating plaque. As plaque builds up on your teeth, it harms both your gums and tooth enamel and leads to tooth decay. Your oral health is significantly improved when you limit or eliminate sugary drinks and treats. When you do eat or drink sugary treats, we recommend that you rinse, brush, and floss as soon as you can.
Tip #4: Eat Foods that Naturally Clean Your Teeth
Some foods are actually good for your teeth. Firm, crisp foods like carrots, apples, celery, and popcorn can reduce plaque. Here is a brief list of important foods that can help clean your teeth naturally due the texture, composition, or nutritional content:
- Apples – have a fibrous texture that can help clean teeth and gums
- Carrots – are full of fiber
- Celery – is full of fiber with vitamins A and C
- Cheese – raises the pH in your mouth, reducing the risk of tooth decay, and contains calcium and protein
- Leafy Greens – spinach, kale, and other leafy greens are high in fiber
- Almonds – crunchy and high in calcium and protein
- Cucumbers – have a high water content that washes away bacteria and food particles
- Strawberries – are high in vitamin C and antioxidants
- Yogurt – contains beneficial bacteria or probiotics that combat harmful bacteria in the mouth
Tip #5: Avoid Smoking
After having your teeth cleaned, you should avoid smoking or vaping for 24 hours because your teeth are more sensitive after a dental cleaning and the chemicals in cigarette smoke delay healing. Nicotine also stains teeth. The damage nicotine can cause increases right after a dental cleaning. Nicotine and tar also coat your mouth and teeth, harming your gums. This coating increases bacteria and plaque production, which leads to the risk of gum disease and tooth decay.
Schedule a Dental Cleaning and Checkup Today!
If your teeth have been feeling less than clean (maybe even a bit “furry”) and it has been a while since you had a good cleaning, call us. Our professional team at Sninski and Schmitt Family Dentistry is here to keep your teeth clean and healthy. Call our Holly Springs dentist office at (919) 600-6262 and our Cary, NC dentist office at (919) 467-2203. Or, use our online form to schedule an appointment.