We’ve all heard it countless times: you need to brush and floss every day in order to maintain a healthy smile. Of course, it’s one thing to say that you need to bush at least twice a day, but it’s another thing to make sure our busy lifestyles don’t leave us so drained at the end of the day that we go straight to bed without that second and very important brushing.
In other words, despite our best intentions, life just gets in the way sometimes and disrupts our normal dental hygiene routine. In some cases, we just don’t think about how we might improve our routines and make sure our teeth stay healthy.
The trick to improving oral hygiene at home is to make small but consistent changes. Consider some of the following tips.
- Have a Stock of New Brushes
You should change your toothbrush every three months. This keeps it from harboring bacteria and from getting too rough for your teeth. If you only have one at a time, it is really easy to forget buying a replacement the next time you go grocery shopping. If you have a few on hand, you can make the switch instead of making do with an insufficient hygiene tool.
- Use a Timer
If you’re going to do something, do it right. That means you should get the full two minutes of teeth brushing each time. This can be tough, though, especially when you’re in a hurry. What seems like two long minutes when you’re rushing out the door is actually closer to 30 seconds. Get yourself a little timer – either sand or digital – and use it every time you brush.
This can be particularly useful if you have any little ones in the home who are just learning to take care of their own teeth.
Relevant side note: if you consistently have a hard time getting in the right amount of brushing every morning or night, you may consider switching to an electric toothbrush.
- Make Small and Consistent Dietary Changes
You only have to make a few changes to your diet at fits. Just some small things that are easy to accomplish. Start by cutting out some of the sticky, sugary, starchy foods from your daily diet, and soon you’ll realize you don’t even miss them. Then you can add a few more things that are tooth-healthy, and the next thing you know, this kind of healthy eating will become second nature.
- Drink More Water
Water is an important part of your dental health. It will help to flush any leftover food particles so bacteria and plaque won’t build up on your teeth. It can also help remove some of the chemicals that would normally stain your teeth, too.
- Practice Your Flossing Technique
This is another case of: don’t just do it. Do it right. As long as you’re flossing on a daily basis, you’re doing great, and we want to encourage that kind of behavior. But we also want to make sure your technique is effectively cleaning the spaces between your teeth and against your gums. Pay attention to how you’re using it and see if there is any way for you to improve.
- Make Sure Your Hygiene Products Are Effective
There are so many different dental hygiene products out on the market that it can be a little confusing if you’re not sure what you’re looking for. Get the right brushes, toothpaste, and mouthwash to make sure you’re not wasting your time.
- Put Your Next Appointment in Your Calendar Right Now
You’ve heard us say it before, but visiting the office at least twice a year is extremely important. Unfortunately, it is all too easy to let that second visit slide. The sooner you put the next appointment on your calendar (whether it’s digital or physical) the more likely you’re remember it in six months.
How you treat your teeth at home will have a long-term impact on your dental health. Even if you’ve let some of your good habits slide, it’s never too late to start adding some of these tips back into your daily routine.