How To Keep Your Teeth Healthy (Besides brushing)

It’s easy to get tunnel vision when it comes to taking care of your teeth. To keep healthy, all you need to do is brush every day, and mix in some flossing, right? In some cases, you can keep your teeth clean with this, but the fact of the matter is that there’s a lot more that you can be doing in terms of your oral health. Here are some key options that can be a bit off the beaten path.

For one thing, don’t forget that when it comes to what you eat, there is such a thing as teeth-friendly foods. Along with avoiding sugary and syrupy foods, be sure to eat plenty of leafy green vegetables as well as dairy foods that are rich in calcium. Why? These foods have nutrients that are essential for keeping your teeth healthy.

If you’re ready to incorporate some new dental tools outside of your toothbrush, a great place to start is a tongue scraper. To use this, simply run the scraper over your tongue at least once a day along you’re your brushing. This is great because it reduces the number of bacteria in the mouth that can end up becoming plaque and tartar. If you find yourself on the go and don’t have any floss, it may be a good idea to use sugar-free gum in a pinch. This is because it can stimulate saliva production, which has a natural benefit for oral health.

In some cases, you may want to turn to the natural and herbal world, and this is where the South Asian tradition of oil pulling comes in. Oil pulling involves using coconut oil or sesame oil and swishing it around in your mouth to take advantage of its anti-bacterial effects. There are a surprising amount of different herbal components that you can make into different mouthwashes. These include aloe vera, sage, and tea tree oil. This helps not only avoid plaque, but also take care of your gums. As a note, though, if you plan on putting these into action, it may be a good idea to check with a doctor first.

Remember, the purpose of some of these practices is to complement your typical oral health routine, not replace it. Be sure to regularly visit the dentists at Pickering Square Dental to keep your teeth clean and stay on top of other oral health issues.


The Importance of Brushing and Flossing

Ever since we were young, we have always taught how important brushing and flossing our teeth are. Despite the many reminders, we still, at times, forget to maintain a proper healthy oral routine. Here are a few reminders on the importance of these two acts:

Brushing Our Teeth
Plaque is a colourless film of bacteria that coats your teeth if you do not brush them properly and on a regular basis. Plaque contributes to tooth decay and gum diseases. Brushing the teeth stops plaque from building up. When you brush your teeth, you are also helping your mouth smell fresh and clean. It is never enough to just chew gum and it definitely does not kill any bacteria. People who do not brush their teeth on a regular basis are more prone to having tooth loss and other dental problems.

Proper Way of Brushing the Teeth
When brushing the teeth, make sure that you brush all the surfaces of your teeth – in total, it should take you no less than about two minutes. It is a must to brush the inner and outer tooth surfaces, as well as the chewing surfaces of your teeth. Children should be supervised when brushing their teeth until they are at least seven years old. It is important to spit out any excess toothpaste after brushing. Using a mouthwash that contains fluoride can be an aid in preventing tooth decay, but do not use it immediately after brushing your teeth. Doing so, washes away the concentrated fluoride in the toothpaste left on your teeth.

Flossing the Teeth
Flossing is an act that is often neglected but is a vital part in maintaining proper dental health. By flossing daily, you can remove plaque that is stuck between your teeth. This is an area that cannot be reached by your toothbrush. Unless the plaque is removed from this area, it can contribute to the build-up of tartar, cavities and other dental concerns. Flossing is also one of the things that most people do not enjoy doing. It’s something that is so easy to do, yet equally easy to neglect and put-off. Just like toothbrushes, dental flosses come in different sizes, types and flavours and worth finding one that each family member likes.

Proper Way of Flossing the Teeth
Flossing is not just for dislodging the food wedged between your teeth and plaque. It helps in reducing bad breath and gum diseases by removing plaque that forms along and under the gum line. The best time to floss is before brushing the teeth. Take 12-18 inches (30-45cm) of floss and grasp it so you have a couple of inches between your hands. Slip the floss between the teeth and into the areas between your teeth and gums – as far as it will go without forcing it. Floss with 8-10 strokes, up and down between each tooth, to dislodge plaque and food.

Maintain a healthy oral routine now in order to avoid more complex dental conditions and issues in the future!

Why We Love Brushing Our Teeth (and You Should, too!)

family brushing teeth

Some people think that brushing one’s teeth is just to keep our breaths smelling good and our teeth pearly white. There must be something more than just those two reasons since brushing our teeth had been important since we were kids. Despite how long you’ve known that it is essential, you still tend to forget to brush your teeth as often as you should. Let’s be reminded on why it’s important that we brush our teeth:



Prevents Bad Breath

Bad breath is not necessarily the lack of oral hygiene – it can actually be caused by other existing health problems. However, its common cause would be poor dental hygiene. 

Prevents Loss of Teeth

For babies, tooth loss is a normal thing. However, it is definitely not a normal thing for adults. For adults, tooth loss might be due to an injury, gum disease or, tooth decay. This might be a bit frustrating for adults, especially in social gatherings.

Prevents Cavities

Cavities are permanent damage that comes in the form of tiny holes in the teeth – more so found on the hard surface.  These holes, known as decay are breached by acids from certain sugary foods and liquids. When this happens, it can and sometimes causes pain or tooth sensitivity.

Prevents Gingivitis

When a person fails to brush or floss his or her teeth adequately, plaque forms and tends to stay on the gums and the teeth – this is how gingivitis develops.  It’s a form of gum disease that creeps beneath one’s gum line and it separates the teeth from the gums.