Top 5 Oral Hygiene Tips for a Bright, Shiny Smile

smiling womanWithout a doubt, good dental care is the cornerstone of a beautiful smile! Maintaining a daily dental care routine is essential to long-term oral health. Therefore it’s important to brush your teeth at least twice daily and to floss at least once a day as doing so will help prevent tooth decay and gum disease caused by plaque build up on the teeth.

Most of us know that there’s always room for improvement in our dental health routine. Today, we’re surrounded by all types of unhealthy food and drinks of which many are not good for our teeth. Plus, many foods and drinks like some berries, colas, coffee, tea and red wine can stain teeth, which can result in a smile that’s not as bright as it could be.

Many patients who visit our Gretna and Metairie, LA dental practice ask us for advice regarding how they can keep their teeth bright, shiny and beautiful. That’s why we’d like to offer these five oral hygiene tips that can go far in maintaining a bright, white smile!

1. Be Mindful of What You Eat
By avoiding the consumption of drinks that will stain your teeth such as tea, coffee and red wine, you can help keep your teeth white and bright. If you do choose to drink beverages that stain teeth, consider using a straw as this way the liquid will bypass your front teeth. After eating foods like intensely pigmented berries such as blueberries, blackberries and pomegranates, take the time to swish water in your mouth and then brush your teeth thoroughly.

2. Don’t Smoke
Smoking is not only bad for your health but it also is one of the main contributors of tooth staining. Plus, smoking is a recognized risk factor for the development of periodontal disease – a condition that eats away at your gums and the bones supporting your teeth. It can be tough to snuff the habit but there are many over-the-counter stop-smoking products available such as nicotine gums, patches and sprays. Your family doctor can help you quit the habit by prescribing a medication or by suggesting you join a stop smoking program.

3. Avoid Hot Drinks that Stain
While that steaming hot cup of tea or coffee may help you wake up in the morning, drinking teeth-staining beverages when hot can cause the staining agents to sit on the surface of your teeth longer than necessary to result in stubborn stains. While giving up coffee or tea may not be an option, a good alternative to drinking these beverages hot is to drink them cold through a straw. This way, the beverages will bypass your front teeth while still giving you that jolt of caffeine you need to get going each morning.

4. Brush and Floss Before Bed
Many of us are guilty of neglecting to brush and floss our teeth before going to bed at night. However, by doing so, we are risking the development of tooth decay and gum disease. During then nighttime, our mouths produce less saliva which is a natural defense against decay and gum disease. By neglecting or forgetting to brush and floss before bed, bacteria and plaque have a more optimal environment in which to wreak havoc on our teeth and gums.

5. Maintain Appointments with Your Dentist
Because most of us lead very active lives, it’s easy to put off going to the dentist for routine checkups and cleanings. However, by not going to the dentist regularly, you are putting your oral health at risk as your dentist is trained to spot dental problems early before they have the opportunity to do harm to your teeth. You should see your dentist at least once per year.

Our Gretna and Metairie, LA dentist Dr. Gregory Guerra provides a wide range of dental services that are all designed to help maintain optimal oral health. Whether you need a family dentist to care for your family’s dental health or are interested in teeth whitening, Guerra Dental Health has the solution you’re looking for!

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