With so many people currently doing the self-quarantine thing, it’s easy to lose perspective. You’re probably not even thinking about your next Orlando dentist’s visit, for example. However, while a lot of things have been suspended, taking care of your teeth shouldn’t be one of those. At Serene Dental, we know we’re going to see a handful of clients coming out of lockdown for their dental visits in Orlando with their teeth in worse condition. To help prevent that, we decided that we’d try to share some helpful tips for keeping your teeth in good repair, even though you’re stuck at home. A lot of these you probably know already, but it’s good to reiterate, especially since you might conveniently forget one or two. Here are seven pieces of advice for taking care of your teeth to make your first post-isolation dentist visit less uncomfortable.
1. Don’t Be Lazy with your Brushing
One of the first things to take a hit when you’re in isolation is your self-management routine. Many of you might have decided that, since you don’t have to go out during the day, it doesn’t make sense brushing your teeth in the morning. The results of omitting your morning brushing routine (or even the one you do at night) could be disastrous.
The Australian Dental Association mentions that if you want the maximum benefit from brushing your teeth, you should do it at least twice a day using a comfortable toothbrush. Avoiding this routine will significantly impact your oral health, and the problem with getting a cavity or gum disease is that it’s challenging to treat. Prevention is always better than cure. Just like you remember to wash your hands, remember to keep brushing your teeth.
2. Ease Off the Teeth-Staining Products
Coffee and tobacco both introduce nasty stains on your teeth. At this time, it may be tempting to have three to five cups of coffee more than you would when you were going through regular life. Please don’t do it. Both tobacco and coffee can be responsible for a whole slew of maladies, such as tooth loss, gum recession, and even periodontal disease. Luckily, there are ways around this. Consider using a straw for drinking your coffee and maybe avoiding the cigarettes for a while. Both your teeth and your lungs might thank you for the latter.
3. Use Fluoride Toothpaste
The American Dental Association notes that they only add their seal of approval to kinds of toothpaste that contain fluoride in them. Science tells us that fluoride can help strengthen our teeth’s resistance to tooth decay. You might get the temptation to opt for a cheaper toothpaste that doesn’t have fluoride in it, but you’ll regret that decision.
Healthline reports that despite fluoride-inclusive toothpaste being the only scientifically proven way to strengthen teeth, an alarming number of consumers are opting for fluoride-free products instead. Please don’t be like them. Make sure you use a fluoridated toothpaste to maximize the effectiveness they offer.
4. Replace Your Toothbrush Regularly
If you’re brushing as often as you should, then your toothbrush will eventually get worn down. It’s not a good enough excuse that there aren’t many places open to buy a toothbrush. Supermarkets and pharmacies count as essential services, and they have your back when it comes to buying a new toothbrush. Ideally, it would help if you were replacing your toothbrush every three months. However, if you’re incredibly intense about your brushing, or you have really soft bristles in your toothbrush, then it’s likely that you might need to replace your brush more often. Please don’t wait till all the bristles fall off the brush before choosing to replace it.
5. Don’t Skimp on Floss Use
This tip is another one that you should be aware of, but that will likely fall by the wayside as self-isolation continues. A lot of clients we’ve seen already don’t floss correctly. Flossing can be a time-consuming affair, but if you want good oral hygiene, there’s no replacement for proper flossing. Since supermarkets and pharmacies are still open, as we mentioned before, there’s no excuse for running out of floss and not getting more.
If you’re against using floss for some reason, there’s also the option to purchase floss-picks with replaceable heads. They’re a lot handier to use and may cost a bit more, but worth the convenience. They might offer less effective flossing than using your own hand-held floss, but something is still better than nothing. If you’re skipping flossing because you think it’s no longer necessary, you should cut that out right now.
6. Tooth-Healthy Diet Considerations
Many of us are stuck at home, sitting on the couch, gobbling up potato chips, soda, and candy nonstop as we binge-watch streaming series. When we need food, we make something that uses bread or actually put effort into it and make a side of pasta to go with some sauce. Aside from these things causing you to put on weight if you’re not exercising, they can also play havoc with your teeth!
Soda, candy, and even chips are awful for your teeth since they promote cavities. Bacteria try to digest the leftover pieces of those foods on your teeth and end up eroding the enamel and causing holes. Pasta and bread are both starchy foods that break down into sugars. If you’re not brushing after each meal, they are going to hang around on your teeth with the same results.
Try to focus on more healthy foods if you can. Apples and other crunchy fruits are great options for snacks. Eggs, cheese, milk, and yogurt provide great additional materials for building and strengthening teeth. Don’t let junk food ruin years of proper tooth protection in a single month.
7. Clean your Toothbrush Properly
Toothbrushes need regular maintenance, just like any other cleaning utensil. While Colgate mentions that you can’t sanitize your toothbrush using commercial products, there’s no real need to do that anyway. Proper care of a toothbrush means more than just rinsing it out after you finish using it, however. A more thorough rinse in warm water along with flicking the bristles will provide a better method of cleaning the toothbrush than just passing it through a running stream.
Some people soak their toothbrushes in an antibacterial solution, but there’s no scientific evidence that proves this helps clean the bristles. Not cleaning your toothbrush may allow bacteria to gather on the bristles, and could potentially lead to it harboring dangerous pathogens. Remember to clean your toothbrush after every use.
Be Ready to Meet the Dentist!
After the self-isolation orders come to an end and your Orlando dentist is back to doing regular and routine checkups, following these tips will have you in good shape for a visit. You will probably get some compliments about how well you managed the isolation time with your dental regimen. Even if you don’t follow all the advice we offered, you should at least brush, floss, and clean your toothbrush. If you want to show off your dental prowess during isolation, give Serene Dental a call, and let’s see what you have to offer! We’d be glad to count you as one of our new long-term clients. Contact us today!