Bazzup Health NewsDiseases & MedicineHealth Living

Basics About Good Oral Hygiene

Many adults overlook the importance of good oral hygiene, however, the consequences that come with ignoring the facts can be damaging. Sadly, few are aware of the lifestyle choices they can take towards better dental health, but once educated, fast improvement can be seen.

What is Oral Hygiene?

Oral hygiene and health go hand in hand, when one is in good condition, usually so is the other. But you may be wondering, what exactly is oral hygiene? Briefly stated, it is the practice of keeping one’s mouth clean and free of disease along with other problems.

Why is oral hygiene important?

Oral hygiene is preventative care. This means you can stop oral health problems — such as cavities, gum disease, bad breath (halitosis) and other issues — before they start by taking good care of your teeth and gums.

Oral health is also linked to whole-body health. For example, if an infection is present in your mouth, your bloodstream can carry the bacteria to other areas of your body, leading to other health concerns like heart disease and stroke. Keeping your teeth and gums healthy is an important part of long-lasting overall health.

What conditions are linked to oral health?

Research shows that gingivitis and periodontitis can contribute to certain health conditions, including:

  • Cardiovascular disease.
  • Stroke.
  • Endocarditis (infection of your heart’s inner lining).
  • Pneumonia.
  • Pregnancy complications, such as premature birth and low birth weight.

Conversely, there are certain health conditions that can have a negative impact on your teeth and gums, including:

  • Diabetes.
  • Osteoporosis.
  • Alzheimer’s disease.

If you or a loved one has any of the conditions listed above, ask your dentist how to promote and support overall health through proper oral hygiene.

What are the signs of poor oral hygiene?

There are several warning signs that could indicate oral health problems. The most common signs of poor oral hygiene include:

Related Articles
  • Bleeding gums.
  • Tooth decay.
  • Chronic bad breath.
  • Loose teeth.
  • Gum recession.
  • Mouth sores that don’t go away.
  • Toothache.
  • Swelling of the jaw.
  • Gingivostomatitis,

How can I improve my oral hygiene?

Excellent oral hygiene protects your teeth and gums and keeps your smile beautiful. Here are some general oral hygiene instructions to keep your smile healthy:

  • Brush your teeth at least twice a day. Use fluoride toothpaste and a soft-bristled toothbrush. (Medium or hard bristles can damage your gums and tooth enamel.) When you brush, place your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle toward your gums. This helps sweep away plaque and bacteria at the gum line. Be sure to brush all teeth surfaces, including the backs and sides.
  • Floss once daily. You can’t reach the spaces between your teeth with brushing alone. To clean these areas, you need dental floss. Take a piece of floss that’s about 18 inches long. Wrap each end around your middle fingers. Using your thumbs and forefingers, guide the floss between two teeth. Wrap the floss snugly around one tooth in a C shape and clean it using about 10 up and down strokes. Next, wrap the floss around the other tooth and repeat. Continue this process on all of your teeth. If you have dexterity issues, you can also use interproximal brushes and dental picks to clean between your teeth. (A note about water flossers: While water flossers are excellent for removing large pieces of food and debris, they can’t remove the biofilm from your teeth surfaces. So, if you use a water flosser, be sure to use traditional dental floss as well.)
  • Brush your tongue. Your tongue holds bacteria like a sponge. Whenever you brush your teeth, don’t forget to brush your tongue. You can use your toothbrush for this purpose. Or, you can purchase a tongue scraper in the oral health aisle.
  • Use an antibacterial mouthwash every day. Antibacterial mouthwash helps keep harmful oral bacteria at bay. In addition to washing away food and debris, it also reduces plaque buildup. Be sure to choose an alcohol-free formula to prevent dry mouth.
  • Visit your dentist regularly. Routine dental exams and cleanings are essential for good oral health. Many people do well with six-month visits. But, if you’re prone to cavities, gum disease or other oral health problems, you may need more frequent appointments.
  • Avoid smoking and other tobacco products. Smoking is a leading cause of gum disease and oral cancer. It’s best to avoid these products altogether. If you currently smoke and would like to quit, ask your healthcare provider about treatment options that can help.

Remember, the best oral hygiene routine is one that you can practice consistently. Talk to your dentist about a personalized oral health regimen to meet your needs.

What are the advantages of good oral hygiene?

While your dentist may be able to repair teeth damaged by decay or gum disease, it’s always preferable to stop problems before they start. This is where good oral hygiene comes in. Practicing good oral hygiene offers a wide range of benefits, including:

  • Healthier teeth and gums.
  • A beautiful smile.
  • Fresher breath.
  • A reduced need for dental work such as fillings, crowns, bridges, implants or dentures.
  • A lowered risk of heart disease, stroke, diabetes and other health concerns.
  • A reduced risk of oral cancer.

Additionally, preventative dental care is more affordable than restorative or emergency dental care. So, good oral hygiene can save you time, worry and money in the long run.

Many health risks can result from ignoring the importance of effective oral hygiene. Gum disease, tooth decay, cavities and more are a result of ignoring the simple facts and continuing bad habits. Take time to analyze your current habits and see whether any may be harming your oral health. After which you will know with certainty what’s both good and bad for your oral health.


Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Back to top button