The new year is here, which means it’s time to think about the goals you’d like to accomplish in 2023. While you might plan to eat out less or exercise more often, why not commit to healthier teeth and gums? Your oral and general health are closely connected. You can boost your overall wellness and reach optimal oral health by setting 5 New Year’s resolutions approved by your dentist.
1. Commit to Brushing After Every Meal
Your toothbrush is your first line of defense against preventable oral health issues, like cavities. Although they are preventable, 92% of adults have had at least one. The American Dental Association recommends brushing at least twice daily to keep tooth decay at bay.
If you already have the habit of brushing in the morning and at night, challenge yourself to brush after every meal. You’ll remove food particles that feed cavity-causing bacteria. Create an oral hygiene kit using travel-sized products to make it easy to brush when you’re away from home.
2. Floss Every Day
Besides tooth decay, gum disease is a leading cause of tooth loss. At least 50% of adults have the preventable infection. Not only can it cause missing teeth, but gum disease can increase your risk of several health problems, including cardiovascular disease, Alzheimer’s disease, and diabetic complications.
Flossing removes plaque from areas your toothbrush can’t reach. Without daily flossing, you can leave up to 40% of your teeth’s surfaces uncleaned. Use high-quality floss to clean between each tooth at least once daily.
3. Limit Sugary Foods and Drinks
It can be difficult to resist your sweet tooth, but it’s best to limit how often you have sugary foods and drinks. If you can’t resist something sweet, eat it with a meal because chewing encourages saliva production to rinse away cavity-causing residue from your teeth. Don’t forget to brush after you’ve finished. If you can’t get to your toothbrush, rinse your mouth with water or chew a piece of sugarless gum.
4. Drink More Water
Healthcare professionals recommend drinking at least eight 8-oz glasses of water daily to stay hydrated. H20 also prevents your mouth from getting too dry. A dry mouth is a perfect environment for harmful bacteria to multiply. Water will keep your mouth moist and cleanse your teeth in between brushing and flossing.
5. Schedule a Cleaning and Checkup
The American Dental Association recommends a cleaning and checkup every 6 months. Your dental hygienist will clean your teeth and your dentist will monitor your oral health to detect anything concerning early.
You can achieve a healthy, beautiful smile in the new year by giving your teeth and gums the attention they deserve.
About Dr. Brett M. Pantera
Dr. Pantera earned his dental degree from the University of Connecticut School of Dental Medicine and has regularly continued his education to provide advanced services, like dental implants. He is a proud member of many professional organizations, including the American Dental Association. If you need a cleaning and checkup, request an appointment through our website or call (203) 697-8558.