We all already know that you should be brushing your teeth at least 2 times a day for at least 2 minutes each session, that you should floss every day and that you need to see your dentist on a semi-regular basis. However, there are plenty of other small care tips that can help improve your dental health – and they each only barley any time to do!
Tip 1: Sip on tap water throughout the day
Unlike the majority of bottled water brands, tap water from public water systems will most likely contain fluoride. Fluoride is a special mineral that helps strengthen the enamel that protects your teeth from decay.
In fact, many dentists will agree that the inclusion of fluoride in public drinking water is the single best public health measure for preventing dental decay. Also, drinking water regularly will help wash away the lingering food particles and bacteria that cause damage to your teeth.
Tip 2: Limit your snacking
When it comes to dental health, it’s better to have larger meals fewer times a day than lots of small snacks. This is because every time you eat you expose your teeth to abrasive food particles and compounds that stick to your teeth.
This is because the bacteria in your mouth digests the sugars in food particles, causing an acidic reaction that cause enamel erosion on your teeth. If left unchecked, this process eventually leads to cavities.
Tip 3: Start drinking tea
Black and green tea both contain polyphenols which are compounds that can eliminate or curb bacteria growth in your mouth. The less bacteria you have in your mouth, the less acidic breakdown occurs and the less you tooth enamel is damaged.
Tip 4: Start drinking with a straw
While you might only use a straw while drinking something at a restaurant, it’s actually a good idea to use one all of the time. This is because straws draw the liquid you are drinking straight into your throat, rather than it passing through your teeth.
Every time you drink a sweet drink the bacteria in your mouth begins an acidic attack on your teeth that can last up to 20 minutes from the last sip you had. In order to avoid this, drinking with a straw can help drive the sugar away so that it doesn’t come into contact with your tooth enamel.
Tip 5: Chew sugarless gum
Keeping your mouth moist and full of saliva any way you can is always a good thing in the eyes of dentists. Chewing sugarless gum is a great way to promote your saliva glands to produce more than they normally would, washing away the acids that are caused by bacteria in your mouth.
The flow of saliva also helps to bring more phosphate and calcium to the surfaces of your teeth, which helps strengthen their enamel. It’s best to chew for about 20 minutes after a meal.
Take note: Chewing sugarless gum isn’t a replacement for brushing your teeth or flossing.
David Smith was born and raised in Calgary Alberta and loves to share his passion for health and fitness with others. Apart from running his own podcast, which uploads weekly shows that covers current health trends, he spends his time canoeing and backpacking. David recently spent a summer working at the CFIA as a health supplement reviewer. In regards to academics, David studied kinesiology at Guelph University.