Dental professionals provide important in-office care to help ensure that your teeth and gums remain healthy. Still, restorative and preventive treatments alone do not sufficiently protect your oral health. The dental care that you provide to your mouth at home is also important. As a result, dentists offer advice to help ensure that your teeth and gums receive proper care even when you are away from the dental office.
Here are a few homecare suggestions that dentists offer to keep your mouth in great shape.
Brush Your Teeth Just Before Bedtime
Many people know that they should brush their teeth twice daily for at least two minutes per session. However, they may not realize that the time of the brushing sessions is also important. Brushing in the morning is usually easy to remember because many people want to have fresh breath to start their day. However, of your brushing sessions, the session at bedtime is the most important.
When a person is asleep, the amount of saliva produced by the body wanes. Saliva is needed to dilute bacterial acids and rinse away particles of food that contribute to plaque production.
Tooth decay occurs when bacterial acids dissolve the enamel of the teeth. The acids are produced as byproducts of the bacterial digestive process. However, the saliva in the mouth has a pH that is nearly neutral. It mixes with the acids to make them less corrosive.
When you brush your teeth just before bedtime, you help remove bacteria, acids, and plaque that could harm the teeth while the mouth is in a dry state. Thus, the teeth are better protected when they are in a vulnerable state.
Sip Water Throughout Your Day
As a person drinks, the liquid flows over the surfaces of the oral cavity, including the gums and teeth. When a person consumes water, the clear liquid helps neutralize oral acids, and like saliva, it flushes away edible debris.
By sipping water periodically throughout the day, especially after meals and snacks, the mouth stays cleaner. Oral acids are less able to decay the teeth or inflame sensitive gums. Water also hydrates the mouth to encourage an adequate production of saliva.
Other beverages, such as soda or juice, may hydrate the mouth. However, these liquids contain sugar and acid that can incite decay.
To learn more ways to protect your oral health, schedule an appointment with a dentist in your local area, such as Pacific Ave Dental/Allan L. Hablutzel, DDS.