Spring cleaning is a common phrase tossed around this time of year. Not only with your garage or yard, but April is also “Oral Health Month”.

This is the time of year to take re-evaluate your oral care routine and learn how proper oral health can have an impact on your overall well-being. This April, consider the steps you can take to make sure your teeth and the rest of your body are healthy for the rest of the year.

Taking Care of Your Smile

Sore or bleeding gums, fractured teeth, bad breath, and oral pain can all affect your ability to speak and eat. These problems can have a negative influence on the enjoyment you get from eating and socializing. They can also make you feel self-conscious. There is a very strong connection between our oral health and certain chronic diseases, such as stroke, heart disease, and diabetes. The following tips will help us get a better understanding of how your smile can affect the rest of your health.

It All Begins with your Diet

Your first step is making healthy food choices. Limit foods that are high in sugar. The bacteria in your mouth grow and spread when sugar is added into the mix, and over time, bacteria is the main cause for destroying the enamel on your teeth and causing cavities to form.

However, foods high in sugar are not the only items you want to limit. You also want to watch your consumption of acidic foods and beverages, such as orange juice, processed meats, and carbonated drinks. These foods and beverages can wear away the enamel that protects your teeth, a process known as tooth erosion. Not only can tooth erosion change the appearance of your teeth, but it can also lead to tooth sensitivity and increase the risk of cavities and infections.

In a recent study was done on cavities in animals. Since most animals do not process food before eating, they eat it raw, and natural fresh fibrous and raw food automatically cleans the teeth in animals. Avoiding smoking and sugar, animals rarely or never end up with cavities.

A Proper Oral Care Strategy

Along with watching what you eat, you also want to get in a proper oral care routine. This routine includes brushing and flossing every day. When you’re brushing your teeth, use a soft-bristled toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste. Brush your teeth twice a day for two minutes. Make sure you clean the outer, inner, and chewing surfaces of your teeth. A tongue scraper is also highly recomended for cleaning your tongue properly.

You also need to floss once a day to remove food particles and plaque where your toothbrush can’t reach, including between the teeth and under the gum line.

Getting a $79 Dental Exam and X-rays

While brushing and flossing your teeth at home are important for removing plaque, you can’t remove tartar on your own. This is why keeping up with regular dental visits is so important. Many people will need to see their dentists every six months for a routine cleaning and examination.

During the cleaning, your dental professional will use special tools to remove tartar from your teeth. Your teeth will then be polished to help remove surface stains and flossed to make sure all areas are clean. During the exam, your dental professional will check for cavities, inspect your gums, and examine your tongue, throat, neck, face, and head for signs of swelling or redness.

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