World Smile Day - held on Friday 2nd October this year - is a day on which we’re all encouraged to do an act of kindness to help someone smile. To ensure your smile is healthy and bright this World Smile Day, check out our top tips for good oral health.
World Smile Day: 10 Oral Health Tips To Keep Your Smile Bright
Friday 2nd October is World Smile Day - a day on which people around the world are encouraged to do an act of kindness to help one person smile.
Celebrated across the globe, World Smile Day was started by Harvey Ball, the creator of the iconic smiley face, who believed that everyone “should devote one day a year to smiles and kind acts.”
To ensure your smile is as bright as can be on World Smile Day, we’ve put together a few quick tips on taking care of your teeth and gums for a healthy, happy smile.
1. Brush your teeth twice a day
We’re sure you already know that brushing twice a day is a key factor in ensuring your teeth and mouth remain healthy. Regular brushing helps to remove plaque and bacteria, which can contribute to tooth decay and gum disease.
Making sure you brush your teeth before bed can help to get rid of the germs that have built up during the day, so make sure you’re not skipping that all-important brush at the end of the day.
2. Learn the correct way to brush your teeth
Did you know there’s a correct technique for brushing your teeth to ensure you’re cleaning them properly? Many of us may have developed bad habits when it comes to tooth-brushing, so it can be useful to double-check the way you brush.
To remove plaque and debris effectively, you need to move the toothbrush in circular motions, being gentle but firm. For more tips on how to brush your teeth correctly, speak to your National Dental Care dentist.
3. Don’t forget to brush your tongue
While we usually talk about ‘brushing your teeth’, good oral hygiene also involves giving your tongue a quick brush to remove any plaque build-up.
Brushing your tongue along with your teeth can help to avoid bad breath, as well as minimise the risk of developing other oral health problems. Whenever you brush your teeth, gently brush your tongue with your toothbrush.
4. Choose the right toothpaste
Using a fluoride toothpaste can help to keep teeth healthy, strong and free of decay. However, if you have particular concerns with your teeth and gums, you may want to opt for a specialised toothpaste.
For example, people suffering from teeth sensitivity might benefit from a sensitive toothpaste, while those concerned about discolouration may choose a mild whitening toothpaste. For more advice on the right toothpaste for you, talk to your dentist.
5. Floss, floss, floss
If you ask any dentist or oral health therapist about their oral hygiene tips, the chances are they’ll reiterate the importance of flossing. Regularly flossing your teeth with dental floss can help to remove germs, reduce plaque build-up, and help to lower inflammation in the areas.
Aim to floss your teeth once a day, either with your morning or evening tooth-brushing. If you’re unsure of how to floss correctly - or if you’re finding it difficult or painful - ask your dentist for advice.
6. Consider using mouthwash
While mouthwash alone won’t cure bad breath or prevent tooth decay, it can be a useful way to make your mouth feel fresher and improve your breath in the short-term.
There are also mouthwashes that can help with certain oral health conditions, such as sensitive teeth or mouth ulcers. If you need more information about mouthwash, chat to your dentist about finding one that’s right for you.
7. Drink enough water
Staying hydrated by drinking at least two litres of water a day is an important factor in maintaining good oral health. Water can help to wash away the debris left behind by acidic or sugary foods to prevent them from remaining on your teeth.
Ensuring you drink enough water can also help to keep your mouth hydrated and your saliva at an optimal level. Remember, herbal teas also count towards your daily water intake, which may make it easier to stay hydrated on cold winter days!
8. Limit sugary and acidic food and drinks
Sugary, acidic or processed foods can cause damage to the tooth enamel - the protective layer on your teeth - which can become word down and eroded. This increases your risk of tooth decay, as well as other oral health conditions.
While you don’t need to avoid these foods and drinks completely, it’s a good idea to limit your intake and make healthy food choices that support your oral health.
9. Eat calcium-rich foods
Calcium is an essential mineral for healthy teeth and bones, so ensuring you consume enough foods that are rich in calcium can be great news for your oral health.
Calcium-containing food and drinks include dairy products such as milk and cheese, oily fish like salmon and sardines, leafy green vegetables, and almonds. Making these foods part of your healthy diet can help to ensure you’re getting enough calcium.
10. Visit your dentist regularly
Even if you practice good oral hygiene habits, it’s still important to see your dentist at least every six months. In a routine check-up, your dentist will be able to assess your oral health, identify any potential issues, and offer treatment options if required.
If you’re due for your regular check-up and clean, book an appointment with your local National Dental Care dentist today.