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Spread a smile with those pearly whites

By  , Jagran Cityplus
Dec 29, 2010
4.8 / 5(4 Ratings)

Your teeth are important in many ways. The healthier they are the happier you look. If you take care of them, they'll take care of you. Strong, healthy teeth help you chew the right foods to help you grow. They help you speak clearly. And yes, they help you look your best.  Like ants at a picnic, bacteria go crazy over the sugar on your teeth, breaking it down into acids that eat away tooth enamel, causing holes called cavities. Plaque also causes gingivitis, which is a gum disease that can make your gums red, swollen, and sore.

 

If you don't take care of your teeth, it won't be long before cavities and unhealthy gums make your mouth very, very sore. Eating meals will be difficult. And you won't feel like smiling so much.

 

Good oral health is important for the total well-being. The condition of the tissues and structure of your mouth affect your general physical condition, ability to chew and speak, appearance and personal relations.

 

Dr. Aparna Sharma says, "To help prevent tooth decay and gum disease, practice proper brushing and flossing and see your dentist regularly. Ask your dentist or dental hygienist to show you proper brushing technique. Also, you may want to ask your dentist about additional ways to prevent tooth decay, such as sealants for teeth and fluoride treatments. Brush your teeth correctly for at least 2 minutes twice a day. The most important time to brush is before you go to sleep. It is also a good idea to brush or rinse after meals. Floss between your teeth once a day."

 

When we eat sugary foods or drink sodas frequently throughout the day, the enamel that protects the teeth is constantly exposed to acids. Hard candies, cough drops, and breath mints that contain sugar are especially harmful because they dissolve slowly in your mouth.

 

Sugary or starchy foods eaten with a meal are less harmful to your teeth than when they're eaten alone, possibly because the production of saliva, which washes away the sugar and bacteria, is increased. Eating sugary foods before you go to bed can be the most damaging (especially if you don't brush your teeth afterwards) because you don't produce as much saliva when you sleep.

 

Here are some tips to keep your teeth healthy:

 

Brush your teeth at least twice a day and ideally after every meal, using fluoride-containing toothpaste.

Use a soft-bristled toothbrush. It's gentler on your gums.

Brush your teeth for about two minutes each time you brush.

o  Replace your tooth brush  every three or four months.

o  Visit a dentist every six months.

o  Take more fibrous food.

o  Avoid junk foods and chocolates.

 

Floss correctly

 

A toothbrush can't reach all the tight spaces between your teeth or the areas under your gumline. That can allow plaque to build up, threatening your oral health. So flossing is the best way it removes those particles and improves oral health.

When you floss, gently ease the floss between your teeth.

o  Pull the ends of the floss against the front and back surface of a tooth.

Gently pull the floss from the gumline to the top of the tooth to scrape off plaque.

l Floss the backs of your teeth.

l Use fresh floss as you progress through your teeth.

l If you have trouble getting floss through your teeth, try waxed floss.

l If it's hard to manipulate the floss, try using a floss holder.

 

Tissues and structure of your mouth affect your general physical condition, ability to chew and speak, appearance and personal relations.

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