As 2016 draws to a close and 2017 lies just on the horizon, it’s a ripe time to make New Year’s resolutions. But the trickiest part of making these resolutions is keeping them! Oftentimes, people may make far-reaching resolutions or impossible goals, giving up on them easily at the first sign of difficulty. But it doesn’t need to be this way with your dental care.
Today, we’re taking a step back and ushering in a list of 10 ways that patients can take better care of their smiles for this coming new year. These are quick to perform, easy to remember, and can help you smile more brilliantly by the end of 2017.
10 Easy New Year’s Resolutions For Oral Health
Brush Your Teeth Twice A Day
The American Dental Association recommends that patients brush their teeth at least twice a day for two minutes. It’s not just how long you brush your teeth, but how effective you are at it too. Don’t brush too aggressively, and use a soft-bristle toothbrush which is easy on your teeth.
Brush Your Tongue Carefully
Did you know that a lot of the bacteria that causes bad breath can be linked to what’s festering on your tongue? Invest in a tongue scrubber, or use the scrubber that’s available on the back of many new toothbrushes to clear away waste on your tongue. If you notice fresher breath, you know you’re doing it right!
Look Out For Tooth Decay And Gum Disease
These two conditions are the most common oral diseases around the world, but they can also be prevented from worsening with vigilant dental care. Granted, it can be difficult to survey when looking in the mirror at home, but there are some surface signs that patients can keep track of. Keep an eye out for:
Cracks or dark pits on the crowns of your teeth
- Temperature sensitivity
- Sharp, quick pain in your teeth when you bite down
- Tender gums
If you notice any of these warning signs while out and about, be sure to schedule a consultation with Perio NYC for a check-up. The sooner you treat your condition, the better off you’ll be for the new year.
Wait For 30 Minutes After Eating Or Drinking Acidic Food
When dentists say that patients should brush their teeth after a big meal, oftentimes patients think this means brushing their teeth immediately after eating. Not so! If you consume any acidic food or drinks, such as spicy food, citrus, or wine, it’s recommended that you wait 30 minutes after your meal before brushing your teeth. During this time, drink water to clear away the worst of the acid and let your saliva do the job as well. By brushing immediately after an acidic meal, it can actually weaken the enamel.
Correct Your Teeth With Orthodontics
If you have been prolonging orthodontic care, there’s no better time than this coming new year to take advantage of our orthodontic procedure. By correcting your teeth now, you can save yourself from future dental problems and expensive corrective treatments. With teeth correction, you can enjoy eating and speaking easier, as well as being more confident in your appearance with straightened teeth.
Consume Less Sugar And Starch
Sugar and starch make up a bulk of our food choices, but this doesn’t mean that one small dessert will ruin your teeth. Instead have a balanced diet of sugar, starch, vitamins, protein, and all the other important elements in a healthy meal. By solely consuming sugars and starches, the food particles left behind become food for cavity-causing bacteria, leading to plaque and decay.
Avoid Heavy Alcohol And Tobacco Consumption
Alcohol is a lovely treat, but consuming too much can have a negative effect on your smile. Alcohol can make you dehydrated, depriving your teeth of the saliva it needs to get rid of bacteria. In addition, darkly-colored drinks like wine can also leave permanent stains on your enamel!
Tobacco can have similar effects on your smile, drying out your mouth and leaving harmful chemicals on your tissues. In addition, these chemicals can lead to accelerated tooth decay, bad breath, permanent yellow stains, and an increased risk of tooth loss and oral cancers.
Avoid Too Much Coffee And Colored Food
Drinking too much coffee, tea, or wine, and eating too many dark berries or other colored food can lead to unsightly stains. And unfortunately, these aren’t stains that can easily be removed with brushing. Enjoy these food and drinks in moderation, and be sure to brush your teeth after each large meal.
Drink Lots Of Water
Sipping water throughout the day is considered “one of the best things you can do for your teeth,” according to the American Dental Association. Water not only washes away bacteria, but also maintains your saliva volume, so that it can continue to wash away harmful substances from your teeth.
See Your Dentist Regularly
You should attend hygiene cleanings with your dentist at least twice a year, roughly every six months. These cleanings are vital, as they provide your smile with a clean slate (literally), clearing away any harmful plaque and keeping an eye out for signs of deterioration. It’s a refresh period for your smile, and can prevent you from suffering from tooth decay, gum disease, and more.
Why Choose Perio NYC?
While we’re happy to share the tips above, you can find all you need to keep your oral health resolutions right here at Perio NYC. As our name suggests, we are a premier periodontal therapy dentistry, but we also specialize in a variety of smile restoration treatments. From orthodontics to surgical corrections, we can help you on your way to a beautiful, functional smile again.
If you’re ready for a smile makeover, or just want some new year’s tips for your oral health, contact us today to schedule a consultation with Dr. Gottesman and our team. We can’t wait to help you achieve your smile goals this year!