You’ve enjoyed all the Christmas treats, now what? It’s important now more than ever to recover from the sweets after the holidays. If you are ready to get your oral health back on track for the new year, follow these brushing tips.
Sweets and the Cause of Cavities
You won’t just wake up one day with a cavity, they take time to form. Cavities start from the loss of tooth mineral, also known as demineralization, to eating all the way through the tooth to cause a cavity. Crest explains that tooth decay also occurs when foods containing starches and sugars become trapped between the teeth and not removed with brushing and flossing. Further, major causes of tooth decay include eating sugary, sticky foods, and drinks. The more sugar in your diet, the more acid produced in your mouth, which results in tooth decay. Other causes of tooth decay and cavities, they explain, can include:
- Poor oral hygiene. When you don’t brush your teeth properly and regularly, you allow plaque to build up and attack the tooth enamel.
- Plaque formation. When you don’t remove plaque on a regular basis, it can stick to your teeth and build up over time. Eventually, this can lead to tartar which can only be removed by a dentist.
- Dry mouth. Saliva helps wash plaque from the teeth and prevent harm from the acid produced. If you have a dry mouth, plaque and tooth bacteria may build up more quickly.
- Eating and drinking. There’s no way to avoid eating or drinking, but what you consume plays a role in if you will develop cavities or not. Be sure to thoroughly clean your teeth, especially after eating or drinking something sweet.
- Plaque bacteria. We all have naturally-occurring bacteria in our mouths, however, some of these bacteria cling to the starches and sugars we eat and can form acid, which can cause decay.
- Medical problems. Some types of cancer treatment that have to be treated with radiation can encourage cavities to form by changing the makeup of your saliva.
How to Properly Brush Your Teeth After Sweets
The best way to care for your teeth at home is to properly brush your teeth. If you need to be reminded on how to brush your teeth the correct way, follow this guide from Verywell Health:
- Wet your toothbrush with water and apply a small, pea-sized amount of toothpaste. Tip: use a fluoride toothpaste.
- Start in the back of your mouth. Start with your upper back teeth on one side of your mouth and work in a clockwise direction. Point the bristles at a 45-degree angle to the gum line and use short, circular motions. Once complete at the gum line, move the toothbrush over the surface of the tooth to fully clean it.
- Work in a clockwise direction, finishing up with the lower molars on the other side of your mouth.
- Brush the back surface of your upper teeth, directing the bristles toward the gum line and using a flicking motion down the surface of the tooth. Repeat for a thorough clean. Do the same for the bottom teeth by pointing the bristles towards the bottom gum line and flicking the bristles up and away from the gum line in a sweeping motion.
- Be sure to brush the top, biting surfaces of your teeth, the tongue, and the insides of the cheeks.
- Finish your brushing by winning your mouth with water or a mouthwash.
What to Expect in a Dental Cleaning
While you can brush your teeth at home, it’s important to see your dentist for a professional cleaning every six months. One of the most important parts of coming for a dental checkup is a thorough cleaning of your teeth, gums, and mouth. If you don’t have any issues, like gum disease, a regular cleaning will be provided. A regular cleaning includes removing plaque and tartar from your teeth and gum line, polishing, and flossing. If you have signs of gum disease or other issues, a deeper cleaning will be provided.
Make an Appointment with Mountain Aire Dentistry
When you come to your appointment at Mountain Aire Dentistry, your smile is our top priority. We want you to start 2021 with a fresh, clean smile. We invite you to experience the difference a warm and caring team can provide for you and your family. Enjoy a unique and comfortable dental experience designed to bring a healthier and happier smile back into your life. Call us today to make an appointment at (303)-731-7755.