Ask a General Dentist: What Habits Can Improve Oral Health?

General Dentistry Ashburn, VA

A general dentist will tell you that the habits you develop play a vital role in the quality of your long-term oral health, and good daily habits can significantly reduce the risk of cavities, gum disease and other common oral health concerns. By understanding the most effective habits and making an effort to implement them daily, you can keep your teeth healthy and looking great at all times. 

How to improve oral health

Oral health is not something that happens at once but is instead the accumulation of good habits practiced daily to keep enamel strong and gums healthy. The following are tips from a general dentist about five effective habits to develop that improve oral health. 

Brush properly

Perhaps the most well-known tip a general dentist has to offer is to brush at least twice a day, but good oral care through brushing is about more than just how often the person brushes. It is important to brush the right way as well. Brushing properly should include not placing too much pressure upon teeth and gums to avoid gum erosion or enamel damage, ensuring that all areas of the mouth are cleaned (not just the teeth) and keeping the toothbrush in good condition and clean. 

Use fluoride

Fluoride is tooth enamel’s best friend, and it strengthens enamel, which allows it to fight back against acidic attacks caused by bacteria and food particles. Be sure to talk to a general dentist about how often you should use fluoride treatment, particularly fluoride-based mouthwash. Some general dentists recommend using it every day, along with a fluoride-based toothpaste. 

Floss daily

Flossing is one of the most neglected tasks when it comes to oral health, but it is incredibly beneficial to develop consistent flossing habits. Flossing works to remove food particles in between teeth that are not easily reachable by brushing, and mouthwash does not always wash away food particles that are stuck. Ideally, it is best to floss after each meal, but once or twice a day can make a huge difference as well.

Drink water often

An easy tip to implement daily is to drink water throughout the day. Water washes away bacteria and food particles inside the mouth that create an acidic erosion if left for too long. Instead of drinking soft drinks, coffee, tea or other beverages harmful to teeth, consider taking sips of water each hour of the day. 

Visit the general dentist regularly

Most of the work toward good oral health happens at home, but there are certain complications that are not easily identified without an oral examination by a dental professional. To ensure that oral health issues are identified early and do not worsen, visit the dentist for regular checkups and routine dental cleanings. 

Schedule a visit with a general dentist

If you have oral health concerns or have not visited the general dentist for more than six months, then feel free to reach out to us to schedule a time to come in for a checkup and routine cleaning. 

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