Healthy Teeth: Tips for Smiling
Discover valuable tips for maintaining healthy teeth and a radiant smile. Learn how to protect your dental health!
We appreciate how precious our pearly whites are when they’re down with decay, infection or inflammation. Eating, kissing, talking and smiling are all impacted by nasty gnashers. Protecting these pleasure portals is a priority as they are often affected by ageing. “It’s imperative to brush one’s teeth and gum borders at least twice daily, after breakfast and before bed,” says dentist Steve Graham.
Teeth health is an indicator of systemic health. The mouth can mirror diabetes, heart health, stomach state and osteoporosis. Dentists often detect low bone density by a decrease in jaw bone density or loose dentures. Mouth infections can cause heart disease in up to 50 per cent of cases, according to a study in Circulation. Monitoring our mouth and tending to our teeth, tongue and gums has beneficial effects on our whole body. With enamel 2.5 times stronger than bones, our teeth can last a lifetime if we look after them.
Teeth tips for fabulous fangs
- Eat for strong enamel and to curb cavities. Substances that can deteriorate our teeth include acidic items, candy, carbonated drinks, honey, juice and sugar. Ice, apples, carrots, nuts and other hard foods can increase the chance of cracks or dislodged teeth. Try sipping acidic drinks such as alcohol, citrus and kombucha through a straw. Also, rinse your mouth with water afterwards to wash away acidity.
- Teeth treats to remineralise include foods or supplements high in calcium, magnesium, vitamin A, vitamin D, phosphorous and fibre. Probiotic foods can also nurture the mouth’s microbiome. Add some almonds, chia seeds, tahini and goat’s milk to your mouth’s menu.
- Gargling and swilling salty water or an antibacterial mouthwash can prevent decay and plaque. Antiseptic ingredients include clove, hydrogen peroxide, myrrh, neem and tea tree.
- Oil pull for a bright smile, fresh breath and glowing gums. Mix 1 tbsp organic coconut oil with 1 tbsp black sesame oil, ¼ tsp turmeric and 1 drop clove essential oil. Swill around your mouth for ten minutes then spit out. Oil pulling draws out acidity and mouth microbes such as streptococcus mutans and candida albicans which increase mouth ulcers, cavities and bad breath.
- Floss like a boss at least once a day to clean the 35 per cent of teeth’s surfaces crammed between teeth. Prefer natural-fibre floss coated with beeswax rather than the synthetic nylon options. Prevent periodontal disease by sliding floss between teeth, curving it around the tooth with a gentle up and down motion. Alternatively, try flossing with interdental brushes, a water flosser, air flosser, dental pick or pre-threaded floss. Although bleeding and irritation sometimes occurs when you start flossing, it’s important to continue. As Academy of General Dentistry spokesperson Steven A. Ghareeb advises, “Your gums will toughen up and your oral health will be better for it.”
- Scrape tongue from root to tongue tip with an Ayurvedic tongue scraper or spoon to clear toxins, expel plaque, freshen breath and optimise taste buds. A copper or silver tongue scraper is ideal as it is soft and antibacterial.
- Remineralise teeth regularly with ingredients such as bentonite clay or calcium powder.
- Dental dates at least twice a year for a check-up and clean keep you grinning. Don’t delay attending to issues such as bleeding gums, discolouration, wobbly teeth, cavities, cracks or pain.
- Rinse with water after meals to banish bacteria and neutralise acid.