We all want a healthy smile that we’re proud to display – but with poor eating habits and bad dental hygiene, it’s easy for your teeth to suffer. Here are our top tips for a healthy mouth and a smile to be proud of.
- Brush at least twice a day
Brushing twice daily with fluoride toothpaste is the best way to keep your teeth and gums healthy. Use a small-headed toothbrush with soft bristles, which will make it easier to get into all areas of your mouth. Brush gently in circular motions, aiming for two minutes per session. If you find this hard, try singing the alphabet or Happy Birthday twice. Don’t forget to change your toothbrush every three months, or when the bristles start splaying outwards.
- Cut down on sugar
Sugar causes tooth decay by feeding the bacteria living in plaque on your teeth: these bacteria turn sugar into acids which damage tooth enamel. Try cutting down on hidden sugars in fizzy drinks, processed foods, fast foods and sugary snacks – and stick to drinking water or unsweetened tea or coffee when you can.
- Go for regular check-ups.
Your dentist will be on the look-out for signs of gum disease and tooth decay and can treat them early before they become a problem. Most dentists recommend coming every six months for an appointment, although some may suggest more often if you have any problems. Regular appointments also give your dentist a chance to ask about any changes in your oral health and discuss how you could improve it.
- Use toothpaste with fluoride
Fluoride is one of the most important ingredients in toothpaste and is designed to protect your teeth against decay. It works by preventing bacteria sticking to the surface of your teeth and helps to keep them strong and healthy. Fluoride also helps to reverse early signs of tooth decay, so it’s very important that you use a toothpaste that contains fluoride whenever you brush your teeth.