Basic Dental Products to Boost Your Oral Health
With so many dental products on the market today, how do you know which ones to buy? Too many adults suffer from tooth decay, gum disease, missing teeth and dental emergencies due to poor oral hygiene habits. That doesn’t have to be you! We can help you to know what dental products you need to have in your home and on-the-go, plus how to use them properly. With a few minutes each day, you can be on your way to better oral health in no time!
Many Notice Your Smile First
A person’s smile is one of the first things people notice about others according to 48% of Americans. The eyes are also a common feature, but there’s nothing like a good smile to make a first impression. What your mouth looks like says a lot about your health. In fact, how well you take care of your teeth and gums is an indication of how well you take care of the rest of your health. If you look in the mirror at this moment, what do you see with your smile? Is it healthy and strong or could it use some work?
Some of the best things you can do for your oral health is to follow good oral hygiene practices. The recommendation is to brush the teeth at least twice a day and to floss at least once a day. However, polls show that 49% of men and 57% of women brush their teeth only once a day. Many people that aren’t brushing and flossing often are usually children and people in their young adult years. Only 44% or less of people brush and floss their teeth twice a day. For these simple oral health habits that only take about 2 minutes, there is much room for improvement.
The Importance of Good Oral Health
Why is brushing and flossing so important? There is a common saying among dental professionals that states: “You don’t have to brush all your teeth…just the ones you want to keep!” Brushing and flossing are the foundations stones in building a lifetime of great oral health. Why? They are the best and simplest methods for removing decay-causing plaque that can make people lose their teeth.
When you eat and even drink, your mouth makes plaque. This is a mixture of sugar in the foods you eat combined with bacteria in your mouth. It’s fairly impossible to never eat substances with sugar and also impossible to never have bacteria in your mouth. Therefore, you’re going to make plaque at some point or another, most likely with every meal. That plaque is sticky and acidic and will stick to your teeth like glue. Over time, the acidity will erode away your tooth enamel and cause tooth decay, even though your teeth are the strongest substance in your body.
You can’t just wash plaque away by drinking water; you have to physically brush it away. That is why brushing is such an important part of having good oral health. You brush all that acidic plaque away after you eat, and you floss in between the teeth to get the food and plaque that was stuck. Having great dental products is part of having great oral health.
What Is the “Seal of Acceptance”?
When choosing toothbrushes, toothpastes and other dental products, how do you decide on what to get? Many people just choose whatever dental products look good or are their favorite color. Or they stick to brands that their parents used. A good place to start if you are trying to pick out your own dental products is to look for the ADA Seal of Acceptance.
This is the American Dental Association’s seal that shows that specific dental products have been tested and are effective at helping prevent tooth decay and other oral health problems. This seal began to appear on dental products in 1931 as a way to help consumers choose good products for their teeth. Not every dental product has this seal on it, even though 2 out of 3 consumers prefer to buy only dental products with the ADA’s testing and approval. To get this seal of acceptance, a product must be safe for consumers and must live up to the claims it makes on its packaging. All the dental products that receive the seal have been tested in laboratories for their safety and efficacy.
Extra Tips for Choosing Dental Products
When choosing dental products, test out a few and use the brands you are most comfortable with. Use these tips for choosing:
- Choose a toothbrush that fits the size of your mouth. Make sure it is comfortable to grip and that it is a soft-bristle brush so it is safe on adult tooth enamel.
- For children, choose brushes that are smaller and fit their mouth, whether they are an infant or child. Choose only brushes with soft nylon bristles, as hard bristles can damage delicate baby teeth and gums.
- If you often have tooth decay, invest in an electric toothbrush, as these are better able to remove plaque than non-electric brushes.
- Choose toothpaste that contains fluoride, which strengthens tooth enamel. For children, choose toothpaste that tastes good enough that they will use it. Choosing toothpaste that comes in fun colors or decorative styles will help children want to brush.
- With mouthwashes, any with the ADA seal will be safe for adults. However, don’t choose any mouthwashes with alcohol in them if children will be using the mouthwash.
- Any floss with the ADA seal is safe for children and adults. For children learning to floss, choose hand-held flossers until they learn to use string floss properly
At our office, we have specific brands we like to use for our patients. Ask us about the brands of dental products we love and why by calling Dr. Ania’s office at (303) 872-9940!