A smile is a great first impression, don’t you think? When greeted with a smile, you just feel like smiling right back and communication starts the most positiveway possible. It also helps express happy thoughts and feelings, spreading them all around: joy, gratefulness, surprise, excitement, pleasure, friendship, love…
Realizing that, it’s funny how we sometimes fail to rememberhow important it is to keep a good level of oral hygiene and maintain our mouths healthy and our teeth white and shiny. Believe it or not, half a thousanderent kinds of bacteria inhabit the mouth and hundreds of others can find their way in, alongside many fungi and viruses.
Although some are actually helpful in protecting our mouths, the majority ofmicroorganisms present there are just waiting for the right environment to develop, seek and destroy. A lot can go wrong – from teeth decay and gum disease to more serious general illnesses. Besides that, various other symptoms that manifest trough your mouth can also be signs that somewhere else in the body something is not working as it should.
Gum disease is probably the most common mouth disease. It’s a gradual process in which plaque (residual food and bacteria) accumulates around the teeth. Brushing your teeth after your meals will help remove it or else it will start to irritate the gums. Eventually, if not treated, they will recede from the teeth, giving way to the development of tartar, followed by peritonitis and the almost certain removal of your teeth.
As you can see, this is obviously a very important matter. Be sure to pay attention to any abnormal manifestations – like dental deterioration, bleeding gums, bad breath, dry mouth, variations in the colour of your tongue, infection, gum disease, loosening of the teeth, etc. – and talk to your dentist about it, as soon as possible.
If you don’t have one already, an efficient oral hygiene plan must be implemented in your daily routine, because prevention is, as always, the safest way to act on health issues, creating, in this case, a more conscious habit of keeping our mouths and teeth clean and safe:
Brush twice a day, preferably in the morning and evening, for at least 2 minutes at a time;
Use a soft/medium brush, massaging the gums as you clean, around and between the teeth. Be sure to replace the brush every 3 months or when its bristles start to lose their shape;
Use a toothpaste containing fluoride, since this natural mineral is very effective in protecting and mending the teeth, with the help of saliva;
Floss daily – ask your dentist about the best way to do it, if you have any doubts;
Use an antiseptic mouthwash regularly;
Drink plenty of fluids, but avoid acidic fizzy drinks, too much alcohol or coffee;
Clean your mouth after eating dairy products, fish or meat;
Avoid refined sugar, which feeds the “bad”bacteria and builds plaque, and tobacco, which can lead to mouth cancer;
Fibrous fruits (like apples), cheese and sugar free chewing gum can actually help clean your teeth;
Don’t forget to stock up on your vitamins and iron as they also play a part in increasing your defences;
Visit your dentist every 12 months.
For that superstar charming smile, don’t neglect your mouth and teeth. All it takes is a few minutes every day and a little more conscience in your eating habits. Not too much to ask is it?