The month of October is known for several different events: lower temperatures, pumpkin spiced treats, and of course, celebrating a very spooky Halloween. What you may not know, however, is that October is also known as the official National Dental Hygiene Month.
The purpose of National Dental Hygiene Month is not only to promote awareness and the importance of maintaining good oral health, but also to embrace the hard work that dental hygienists all across the U.S put in day in and day out to provide beautiful smiles to those of all ages.
Our San Antonio family dentist of Alon Dental Care wants to remind you of the important facts and tips on how to maintain a clean, healthy smile that will make you and your children feel like a million dollars.
The Importance of Oral Health
While some may think a bright smile is more aesthetically pleasing, it goes far beyond that.
If a person lacks good oral health, not only would they have unpleasant yellow teeth, but unwanted diseases can develop and spread across your entire body.
The bacteria and plaque you carry can, over time, turn into gum disease, tooth decay, and cavities. Recent studies also indicate that gum diseases may also lead to having heart disease, heart attacks, strokes, and oral cancer.
Some of the early indicators that you need to see the San Antonio family dentist of Alon Dental Care consist of the following:
- Oral Pain and swelling
- Jaw pain
- Dry mouth
- Trouble eating
- Bleeding gums
- Unusual oral spots, sores, and/or blisters
The 4 Daily Dental Practices
The American Dental Association (ADA) has recommended these four essential practices anyone can use at home daily to promote good oral hygiene and fight unwanted tooth decay and gum disease.
It is recommended that you brush your teeth with an appropriately sized toothbrush at least twice a day, for two minutes each session.
The recommended technique would be to scrub at a 45-degree angle directed at the gums, brushing side to side and back and forth in a gentle manner.
To guarantee yourself fresh breath, make sure to brush your tongue, as doing so will remove the extra bacteria that stays on there. Bacteria on the tongue is one of the leading causes of bad breath.
While brushing your teeth is a key essential to keeping your teeth clean, it doesn’t always scrub everything out. Flossing in between your teeth can remove all the plaque that is often hard to reach with a normal toothbrush and will prevent it from developing into gingivitis.
There are different types of brands and tools that can help you get the job done. From the standard over the counter flossing tapes to water-based tools, talk to your family dentist to see what works best for you.
Once you’ve handled your brushing and flossing duties, rinsing your mouth with an ADA-approved, antibacterial mouthwash will get rid of all the leftover bacteria that were left behind and will have your breath smelling like fresh mint right off the stem.
When you are out and about with no access to a toothbrush, sugar-free gum can be your best friend when you need it.
Chewing a piece of gum will help you produce saliva and keep your mouth active, fighting off any lingering threats. It can help you get rid of any remaining bits of food that stuck around after eating or drinking.
Be Consistent With Your Dental Check-Ups
While practicing the Daily 4 essentials is extremely crucial, keeping up with your dental check-ups every 6 months with your dentist is just as important.
The San Antonio family dentist of Alon Dental Care is able to give patients of all ages a thorough teeth cleaning to get rid of the more hard-to-reach debris and can detect any potential dental concerns before they happen.