Keeping a healthy mouth is a product of how well you practice everyday oral health habits. Being committed to flossing, brushing, drinking plenty of water, and maintaining a good diet, you are ensuring not only great dental health but good overall health.
Think about how your investments of resources and time add up if you practice these six habits below in a five-year timeframe.
If you want to clean the entirety of your teeth’s surface, then you should know that brushing alone won’t suffice. Flossing will help remove the plaque from between your teeth. Failing to remove plaque will cause it to harden into tartar which accumulates along your gum line. Use an 18-inch floss daily to prevent the buildup of tartar.
Five-year total: Approximately ½ mile of floss
Eradicate plaque from your gums and teeth by brushing on a daily basis. Failing to brush will result in bacteria buildup that causes gum disease, tooth decay, and other oral health issues. In fact, severe gum disease and oral bacteria may contribute to health concerns outside of the mouth, like heart disease and diabetes. Brush teeth twice a day for two minutes to remove plaque.
Five-year total: 7,304 minutes
Fluoride is an essential mineral that strengthens the tooth enamel, prevents acids from causing cavities, protects teeth from decay, and is found abundantly in toothpaste. This is why you should only use fluoride toothpaste. You will only need a pea-sized amount, but you’ll be surprised to know how that small amount adds up!
Five-year total: About two pounds of toothpaste
Using the same toothbrush for a long time will make it less effective at removing plaque. An old toothbrush with worn bristles will not reach places that a new toothbrush can. Replace your toothbrush every three months to maintain maximum effectiveness, or do this sooner if the bristles start to appear worn or frayed.
Five-year total: About 20 new toothbrush heads or toothbrushes
Water is essential, not only for your overall health but for washing away acids and sugars that cause cavities. Regular intake of water can also help prevent and relieve dry mouth. Left unchecked, dry mouth is a condition that can lead to gum disease, tooth decay, and more. The amount of water intake varies per individual, however, it is recommended that we drink at least eight-ounce glasses every day to prevent dehydration and to achieve oral health benefits.
Five-year total: A minimum of 913 gallons of water
During your dental appointments, your Dallas dentist can detect gum disease, cavities, and other mouth conditions, when they are simpler and less costly to treat. A routine oral health exam can also uncover other health conditions like diabetes, blood disorders, or Crohn’s disease.
To prevent oral health issues, a professional dental cleaning can remove bacteria and tartar buildup while brightening your smile and protecting the integrity of your teeth.
Five-year total: At least five to ten visits for preventive treatments and oral health exams
“Periodontal (Gum) Disease,” National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, https://www.nidcr.nih.gov/health-info/gum-disease
“Toothbrushes,” American Dental Association, https://www.ada.org/resources/research/science-and-research-institute/oral-health-topics/toothbrushes
“How fluoride helps to prevent tooth decay,” American Dental Association, https://www.mouthhealthy.org/all-topics-a-z/fluoride/
“Nutrition and healthy eating,” Mayo Clinic, https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/nutrition-and-healthy-eating/in-depth/water/art-20044256