You are really careful about every aspect of your health specially the dental care. You brave the dentist’s chair every six months to keep your pearlies in top shape. So it must have been surprising when you felt that twinge at the back of your teeth as you sipped cold drink. So was your dental care routine not good ?
Importance of Oral hygiene & Dental Care
The fault is not really yours. By the time you reach your 35th year, your teeth starts aging – meaning teeth start looking more yellow, gums get thinner, and enamel thins out leading to sensitized teeth. Proper dental care is vital at this stage. According to dentists, your 45th year can mark many changes in your dental structure by making the teeth appear longer and larger as gums recede, and the shape of the jaw loosens.
In fact with age, many tooth problems start arising. However regularly you brush, tartar is formed on everybody’s teeth. The first thing that happens is the gums or the gingiva gets inflamed and gingivitis occurs. The swollen portions become bigger catchment areas for dirt and food particles. The gums recede due to pressure from the tartar. From there gingivitis progresses to Periodontitis, where the gums, the surrounding structures and the bone get inflamed. Then you get loss of gum tissue. You get black colored triangular areas at the junction of gums and the teeth, which look like that when you are aged. As you grow older, the gums shrink. The teeth get brittle. The nerves inside the teeth get smaller. The gums get more fragile. The main dental worries are gum disease, yellowing teeth, gaps forming in teeth, teeth jutting out and loss of teeth.
As you grow older, your mouth also tends to get drier, which means less production of saliva – an important thing that keeps the teeth and gums clean. This also gives rise to oral cavity problems. In fact dentists say that it is a good idea to visit your dentist at least twice or thrice a year after you cross your 30’s. Besides natural aging process, reasons like not brushing teeth well, not massaging the gum well, tartar build-up, and excessive acidity on the mouth can also cause teeth to decay or get affected.
In fact you should rush to your dentist the moment you notice swollen or bleeding gums, foul smell in the mouth, ulcers, or loose teeth. Early detection and treatment of oral health problems can ensure a lifetime of good dental health.
15 Tips for Dental Hygiene and Perfect teeth
- The protection of teeth should start from childhood. If a person has not taken dental care seriously in their childhood, it is never too late.
- Brush twice a day. Brushing at night is more important than brushing in the morning.
- The toothpaste you use should have an optimum amount of fluoride in it, since it is good for not only caries protection but also your health. Statistics say that 30 % of the toothpaste used while brushing is ingested by even the adults!. Too much or too little of fluoride is bad. When fluoride comes in contact with the enamel of the tooth, it forms flour apatite. This is a protective layer, which makes the tooth further resistant to tooth decay.
- Use an electric toothbrush, so that the fluoride absorption efficiency is increased
- For proper dental care, consumption of acidic drinks like aerated soft drinks, cordials and fruit juices should be limited. Food acids tend to soften tooth material and dissolve the minerals in tooth enamel which causes holes or cavities. In severe cases, teeth may be ‘eaten’ right down to the gum.
- Consumption of sugary foods should also be limited for proper dental care. Bacteria in dental plaque change sugars into acids which is not good for oral health and dental care
- Using dental floss and proxabrush keeps space between teeth clean so that swelling of the gums and tooth decay can be avoided.
- Whitening of teeth or bleaching is useful, not only to whiten the teeth but also to tighten gums. For proper dental care, this can be done once in 3-4 years. There are maintenance whiteners also available, which can be used in the interim. Never use any teeth whitener off the shelf. Unless it is done under the supervision of a doctor and done scientifically, it will not work properly.
- Never brush harder to remove the yellowness of teeth. It will only scratch off the enamel. Due to the hard brushing the gums also get more irritated and are pushed away. They also cause man made cavities called Class 5 cavities.
- However much you brush, tartar is formed in everybody’s teeth and to avoid complications, a cleaning session should be taken up with your dentist every 6 months. This should start at an early age. The cleaning removes the tartar, the polish removes the plaque and the pellicle and then the fluoride can act better, so that your teeth are protected
- The smallest cavities should be filled immediately, so that the problem does not get aggravated.
- Always insist on a tooth colored metal-free composite filling since they are much superior. Never go for a silver filling, which is actually an amalgam of silver and the mercury starts slowly poisoning you.
- The teeth except the wisdom teeth support each other. If you remove a single tooth, the shape and position of the surrounding teeth change in the next 15 years. So, it is imperative that you do not lose the tooth and save the tooth by root canal treatment.
- Edentulous ridges must be regularly massaged with finger at the time of cleaning the mouth.
- Tongue should be cleaned thoroughly with a tongue cleaner.
If proper dental care is taken, one can have healthy teeth and gums throughout the life span.