Sometimes we don’t give it a lot of thought before it is too late. We brush our teeth each day and think we are doing enough for healthy teeth… and then, somewhere in our middle years a tooth breaks, then another, and so begins a long process of root canals, tooth extractions, partials, and then a full set of dentures. It is unfortunate and costly… and it doesn’t have to happen.
Oral care does get harder as we age, and the habits which sufficed before, do catch up to us. It is imperative that not only do you brush and floss at least twice daily, but also see your dentist regularly for cleaning and an exam. Here are a few tips to keep your teeth healthy through a lifetime.
Understand the Mouth’s Environment
Your mouth experiences wide swings throughout the day. For example, the level of pH changes with the food and drink you consume. Acidic drinks such as lemon water or sodas will damage the enamel. Sugar in food and drinks acts as food for the bacteria that then create an acid and again, damage teeth. Your saliva is a natural protectorate against bacteria and acids, but sinus infections, breathing with the mouth open, and even age makes this saliva less effective.
One of the best habits you can adopt, no water your age is to drink water. Sipping water after food or another drink washes away some of the acid or sugar which can hurt your teeth.
Finish your Food or Drinks
We are all guilty of grabbing a drink and just sipping on it or grabbing a second coffee right after the first to stay awake. But what this does is maintain an environment in your mouth that is not optimal for your teeth. Damage can slowly occur, and the repercussions build up. So, finish your food or drink and brush your teeth… or at least drink some water to clean your mouth a bit! This small habit is important.
Sometimes, Don’t Brush Right Away
Acidic drinks, such as wine, coffee or lemon water soften enamel. The enamel of teeth is more prone to damage if brushed while soft. Over time the small scratches from brushing when the enamel is softened, grow and expose the dentine of the teeth…which is even more delicate. A great solution is to drink water after your acidic beverage and wait 30 minutes before brushing.
We hope these tips are helpful for your healthy teeth and of course, if you have any questions, contact us. We are happy to help!