You most likely want an appealing smile, but focusing on the underlying health of your mouth, teeth, and gums is also important. Fortunately, regular checkups and cleanings by your dentist will be beneficial for both the appearance and health of your smile. It is important to follow your dentist's recommendations that not only include when and how to brush but also habits and mistakes to avoid if you want to properly care for your oral health. If you want to improve the look and overall health of your smile, here are a few things your dentist wants you to stop.
Brushing Too Hard
You probably know that it is important to brush, but you may not realize you are brushing too much or too hard. It may be surprising to learn that brushing too aggressively can actually harm your teeth and gums.
Putting too much pressure on your teeth and gums while brushing can wear down tooth enamel and irritate your gum tissue. Signs of aggressive brushing include the following:
- Bleeding during and after brushing
- Tooth sensitivity
- Receding gums
- Early toothbrush damage
To avoid damaging your teeth and gums by brushing too hard, make sure to choose the right toothbrush. A soft-bristled brush is best. Also, use gentle motions when moving the brush over your teeth and gums instead of hard motions, which result in excessive pressure that harms your oral health.
Thinking Brushing Is Enough
Another thing your dentist wants you to stop is thinking brushing your teeth is enough to protect your oral health. Brushing alone will not remove food, plaque, and bacteria that may be lingering in between your teeth and on your gum tissue.
Flossing is also essential. Even though you may tell your dentist that you floss, they will be able to see if you are flossing during a checkup and cleaning as recommended.
Also, dental cleanings are also effective for removing stubborn food residue and plaque that brushing alone cannot remove. Professional cleanings are beneficial twice a year, but you should schedule these cleanings at least once a year to reduce your risk of decay and gum disease.
Using Teeth as Tools
For some, using their teeth as tools is second nature. You may find yourself chewing on your nails or a pencil. Many people will also use their mouth and teeth to open up packages. Unfortunately, these simple habits could end up causing severe damage to your teeth.
Not only could chewing on objects and opening packages chip or break a tooth, but these habits can also damage tooth enamel. Even slight damage of your tooth enamel could cause food and bacteria to seep into the tooth, resulting in an infection and decay. Without a strong layer of enamel, you may experience tooth sensitivity, as well.
Not Replacing Missing Teeth
You may think you are saving time and money by not replacing a lost tooth, but this could be a mistake that ends up causing more trouble and money in the future. If you have lost a tooth due to an injury or dental issue, replacing it is imperative for your health and wellness.
When a tooth is lost, a space is left in the mouth. Adjacent teeth will start to shift into the open space in many cases. This shifting will lead to misaligned bites and crooked teeth that require orthodontic treatment.
Without filling the space with a denture or implant, the bone of your jaw will start to deteriorate. This affects your facial structure, but it will also decrease the support your other teeth will have.
Your oral health should be a priority. By stopping these habits, you and your dentist will be able to care for your mouth, teeth, and gums with ease.Share