Maintaining good oral hygiene is one of the most important things you can do for your teeth and gums. Healthy teeth boost your self-confidence by making your smile attractive, and make your life easier by making it possible for you to speak and eat properly.
Oral hygiene includes everything you need to do to keep your mouth clean, such as brushing your teeth, using mouthwash or dental floss, and having a dental hygienist clean your teeth. Your dental hygienist can help you learn good oral hygiene techniques and can help point out areas of your mouth that may require extra attention during cleaning.
Importance of Good Oral Hygiene
Good oral hygiene helps to prevent various dental problems including dental plaque, tartar, tooth decay, gum disease and dental erosion. In addition, your oral health may also be a window to your overall health. Poor oral health has been linked to a variety of general health problems, including heart disease and strokes.
Oral Hygiene and Heart Disease
Some researchers have suggested that gum disease may contribute to heart disease because bacteria from infected gums can dislodge, enter the bloodstream, attach to blood vessels and increase clot formation. It has also been suggested that inflammation caused by gum disease may also trigger clot formation. These, in turn, increase the risk of heart disease and stroke. Further research is needed to clarify this possible link. But, it may be an additional reason to look after your teeth and gums.
Oral Hygiene for Children
Teaching your child proper oral care at a young age is an investment in his or her overall oral health in the future. Good dental hygiene habits should begin before your child’s first tooth comes in. Running a damp washcloth over a baby’s gums daily will help clear away harmful bacteria. When teeth appear, start using a soft toothbrush twice a day. Once your child is preschool-age, start using fluoride toothpaste. Also, it is best that your child see a dentist by his first birthday, as early preventive care saves money in the long run.
Oral Hygiene for Elderly
Advanced age can bring a variety of dental problems. Medical conditions that are more common in older people may present difficulties to properly take care of the oral health for seniors. The most common oral health problems in older age include darkened teeth, dry mouth, root decay, gum disease, thrush, and tooth loss.
Good Oral Hygiene Practices
In between regular visits to the dentist, there are simple practices that each of us can take to maintain good oral hygiene and decrease the risk of developing various dental problems.
- Brush your teeth thoroughly twice a day
- Floss daily
- Eat a balanced diet and limit snacks between meals
- Use dental products that contain fluoride
- Use an antiseptic mouthwash each day
For further inquiries, contact today’s Dentistry now and let our dental hygienist take care of your teeth and gums.