The excitement of a new year is upon us, the season of new starts and…
Gum disease can happen before you even notice, so it’s important to think about your gums before they have any problems. Here are 5 ways to improve gum health to keep your teeth and gums at their optimum strength and function.
1. Brushing Your Teeth
Brushing after each meal is probably something you think of as benefiting your teeth, but it’s actually also very important for your gum health. Brushing your teeth clears away food debris, plaque and bacteria that can hide along the gum line and cause irritation and eventually gum disease. Brushing also helps to massage your gums which stimulates circulation. Brushing regularly is one of the most important ways to improve gum health.
2. Daily Flossing
Flossing is another of the top ways to improve gum health. It’s common for food to become lodged between teeth, and that’s usually noticeable, but did you know that it’s even more common for plaque and bacteria to build up between the teeth? Flossing combats this problem so it’s important to floss daily to keep your gums free of irritants and bacteria that can lead to infection and disease.
3. Eating Beneficial Foods
Eating foods like apples, carrots, celery and other crunchy, healthy foods can help to stimulate circulation, promoting gum health. Foods like this can also help to clean your teeth between brushings, but no matter how healthy you eat, it’s always important to brush the first chance you get after each meal.
4. Rinsing with Mouthwash
Mouthwash can be helpful for gum health because it has antiseptic properties that can fight the bacteria that causes gum disease. It can also rinse away debris from flossing, or if used as a stand-in when you can’t brush your teeth right away, it can help to wash away food and neutralize bacteria.
5. Investing in a Waterpik
A waterpik is a special dental tool that uses pressurized water to clean the teeth. It can be especially helpful along the gumline, around back molars or wisdom teeth and around dental or orthodontic appliances where it’s difficult to reach with a toothbrush or floss thoroughly. A waterpik doesn’t replace regular floss or brushing, but can be an extremely helpful tool to add to your oral hygiene routine.
See Your Dentist
It’s important to take good care of your teeth and gums at home, but no matter how diligent you are about your oral hygiene, it’s still important to check in regularly with your dentist, typically every 6 months, for an exam and professional cleaning to ensure that there aren’t any hidden spots where tartar can form or disease may begin to sneak up on your gums. During a dental cleaning, your dentist or dental hygienist can measure your gums to ensure that no inflammation is setting in, which is one of the first signs of gum disease. It’s also a great opportunity to bring up any questions you might have about your gum health and how you can improve it.
Call our Shreveport Dental Office to make an appointment with a dentist who may be able to help you find out more about this topic, and improve your oral health.