29 Dec 6 New Year’s Resolutions for Better Dental Health
New year’s resolutions are often about improving overall health. But not a lot of people think to make a resolution to work towards better oral health. There are many things you can do to get a healthier smile, so we put together this list of dental new year’s resolutions you should consider for 2023.
Six Dental New Year’s Resolutions to Improve Your Smile
1: Brush and Floss Every Day
Achieving a healthier smile begins with improving your daily habits. The most basic, yet most effective steps of a good oral hygiene routine are to brush your teeth for a full two minutes twice a day and to floss at least once a day.
But you can make your hygiene routine even more effective by also using an alcohol-free mouthwash (alcohol leads to dry mouth), or investing in a water flosser if you have trouble handling string floss. And if you wear dentures, it’s crucial that you clean them every day to keep your gums and remaining teeth healthy.
2: Eat a Healthier Diet
Eating foods with the right nutrients will help your body build strong teeth and fight off infections like gum disease. A diet that’s good for healthy teeth and gums should contain the following nutrients and vitamins:
- Antioxidants boost your immune system so your body can fight infections and the inflammation that causes gum disease. Antioxidants are found in foods like blueberries, strawberries, spinach, and kale.
- Fiber helps your mouth produce more saliva, preventing dry mouth and washing away any leftover food particles that bacteria would otherwise feed on. Fiber-rich foods include beans, broccoli, apples, and avocados.
- Vitamin C reduces the risk of bleeding gums. Citrus fruits, bell peppers, cabbage, and tomatoes are all high in vitamin C.
- Calcium strengthens your tooth enamel, protecting the sensitive insides of your teeth. To get more calcium, make sure to include dairy (or almond) products, broccoli, kale, and Brussels sprouts.
- Vitamin D helps your body absorb and retain calcium. Milk and other beverages are often fortified with vitamin D, while salmon, tuna, and egg yolks naturally have high vitamin D levels.
3: Don’t Put Off Dental Treatments
The new year is a good time to talk to your dentist about any treatments you may need. If your dentist suggests filling a cavity, or procedures like scaling and root planing to treat gum disease, don’t put it off until later.
The same goes for mouth pain—if you’re experiencing a toothache, gum pain, or denture pain, don’t hesitate to consult your dentist. Delaying treatment will only lead to worse pain and the need for more invasive procedures.
If you are missing any of your permanent teeth, it’s also important to have them replaced as soon as possible. If you don’t fill the gap with some type of restoration, your teeth will begin to shift and cause more problems for your mouth. Your jawbone will also weaken over time without stimulation from your tooth root, changing the shape of your face.
4: Only Drink Alcohol in Moderation
Alcohol is acidic, so it wears down your enamel and weakens your teeth. It can also cause dry mouth, which leads to plaque and tartar buildup. When you drink a lot of alcohol in one sitting, it increases the risk of harmful bacteria infiltrating your teeth, causing tooth decay and infections. And if the bacteria cause inflammation in the gums, it can lead to gum disease. With so many negative consequences, it’s best to drink alcohol in moderation or to avoid it completely.
5: Quit Smoking
Tobacco use also wreaks havoc on your dental health. Smoking speeds up the progression of gum disease, which results in tooth loss. In fact, according to the CDC, smokers are three times more likely to lose all of their teeth. Smoking also dramatically increases your risk of developing oral cancer. If you’re a smoker, take advantage of the new year as an opportunity to work towards quitting, so you can improve your overall and dental health.
6: Visit the Dentist Regularly
Typically, you should see the dentist twice a year for a professional cleaning and checkup. But you may need more frequent visits if you suffer from dry mouth, have gum disease, or have medical conditions that increase your risk of dental diseases.
Regular dental visits are necessary for keeping your teeth as clean, bright, and healthy as possible. Even if you don’t have any natural teeth left, you still need to visit your dentist regularly to ensure your dentures or implants are still in good shape and that your gums are healthy.
Dentist in Sun Lakes
The end of the year is a good time to schedule any dental treatments you need. From cleanings, to teeth whitening, to dentures, Drs. Saba and Romanin provide a variety of services and treatments that will help to improve your smile. Call us at 480-895-2111 today to schedule an appointment.