Given the approaching summer weather, you might be highly focused on your weight, diet, and exercise routine. If you’re not keeping your teeth and gums in mind, however, your oral health will suffer. In fact, the two go hand in hand – a healthy lifestyle should be an all-around goal, not limited to one portion of your body over the other.
To keep up your oral care routine, remember these seven tips.
- Balance Your Diet
It’s clear that eating a diet full of sugar and processed foods can cause immense damage to your teeth. On the opposite end of the spectrum, however, 100 percent raw food diets might wear down the enamel of your teeth because there’s an increased rate of wear and tear as you break down high-fiber foods. An extreme diet isn’t going to do your teeth any favors. Therefore, balance out your meals. For instance, sugar is okay for your teeth as long as it’s consumed in small quantities and in it’s most natural state.
- Eat Wholesome Snacks
If you’re craving something sweet, opt for an apple. Apples, celery, and carrots are all considered “dental detergents” because they scrub away leftover debris as you munch on them. With dental detergents, you don’t have to worry about embarrassing or harmful leftover food in your teeth as you go about your day. Just remember that these aren’t the only foods you should incorporate your diet. Proteins, fatty fish oils, nuts, and even dark chocolate are all essentials for a wholesome lifestyle.
- Brush the Right Way
Most adults understand the importance of brushing in the morning and before bed, but is there a wrong way to brush? Brushing is undoubtedly better than not brushing, but to optimize your routine, purchase a high-quality electronic toothbrush designed to take the guesswork out of best brushing tactics. Typically, brushing for 30 seconds in each quadrant of your mouth should do the trick, and some electronic toothbrushes will vibrate every time you should move on to the next section. Further, without an electronic toothbrush, you’re forced to work your wrist in order to make the oscillating and pulsating effects of an automatic brush. A spinning brush glides in an orbit motion across each tooth, causing minimal strain to your hand and arm.
- Rehydrate Often
Drinking water is important for your general internal and skin health, but it’s also a great way to regularly flush out the bacteria residing in your mouth. Water is the safest bet for your teeth since it contains no added sugars or acidic qualities that may lead to tooth decay, unlike sodas and juices.
- Go Natural
Whenever possible, opt for all-natural products to put on your teeth. Toothpastes like Tom’s of Maine are made of 100 percent organic ingredients and void of any artificial sweeteners, preservatives, colors, or flavors. Even the packaging is recyclable, so you can rest easy knowing that you’re taking care of your mouth and the environment simultaneously. Opt for Tom’s fluoride-free pastes to avoid complications such as fluorosis, thyroid problems, and other mental and cognitive impairments linked with the intake of fluoride.
- Limit Your Alcohol Intake
Saliva is an important ingredient in a healthy mouth. It contains antibacterial properties that counterattack acids from foods and when it’s missing the acid goes straight to your teeth, leading to erosion. If you consume two or more liquor-laden drinks without drinking water in between, you’ll likely wake up dehydrated. When indulging in alcoholic beverages, drink water before bed to replenish the liquids in your body so it is capable of producing bacteria-fighting saliva. And, please, don’t drink so much that you forget to brush your teeth before bed. Letting alcohol sit in your mouth overnight can do a lot of damage, especially when it becomes a bad habit.
- Get Your Fillings Checked
If you have silver fillings in your mouth, called dental amalgam, you have poisonous mercury in your body. Symptoms of methylmercury poisoning include vision problems (including partial or complete blindness), cerebral palsy, hearing problems, growth problems, intellectual disability, and microcephaly. Mercury poisoning damages brain development and nervous system function, which is why holistic dentists are quick to remove harmful mercury fillings from their patients’ mouths. If you have mercury fillings, consider immediate removal to prevent or combat potential side effects.
Meet Dr. Herrmann
Dr. Theodore Herrmann, DMD, has been practicing general dentistry in South Florida since 1989. He is a graduate of Georgetown University and the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey. Dr. Herrmann is currently a diplomat of the International Congress of Oral Implantology. In 1989, he started Assure A Smile to provide a more engaging and enlightening dental experience for South Florida residents.
Looking for more information on prioritizing your oral health? Contact Dr. Ted Hermann of Assure A Smile at 305-274-0047 to develop a personalized plan for improving both oral health and total body wellness.