Brush up on healthy dental care habits

We only get one set of adult teeth — so it’s critical to take great care of them not only for a great smile but for health teeth and gums. Here’s how.

Woman brushing teeth

April is Oral Health Month in Canada so what better time to (ahem) brush up on your dental care regimen? After all, the better you take care of your teeth, the longer you can hold onto your healthy, pearly whites. Are you doing all that you can to care for your teeth? Read on.

Brush for two minutes

If you can, brush after every meal (Bonus: you may find yourself less likely to cave into cravings if your teeth are fresh and clean) or at the very least in the morning and before bedtime. To help make sure you brush for two minutes, electronic tooth brushes have timers alerting you of when two minutes is up. Use a regular toothbrush? Check the clock in your bathroom or brush during a commercial break on TV (they’re typically two to three minutes).

Rinse your teeth after eating sugar

If you’re able to (easier to do at home, harder when out in public) rinse your teeth after eating something sugary so you don’t have the film of sugar coating your teeth. Also, when drinking pop, use a straw (less soda will coat your teeth).

Replace your toothbrush every two months or so

Pay attention to the condition of your toothbrush. One should last you about two months, but if it’s looking worn or frayed, replace it right away. After all, if you’re aiming to take care of your teeth and are brushing diligently, your efforts will be reduced if your brush is not in great shape.

Floss daily

Your brush can only reach so many spots – it can’t get in between your teeth. If you find traditional floss a chore to use, try interdental brush picks or Philips AirFloss (a dental tool that blasts a burst of air and water or mouthwash in between your teeth to clean the area).

Eat foods that help slough off plaque

You can help keep your teeth clean by eating certain foods that help scrape away plaque and massage gums. Try raw carrots, green peppers, celery and nuts. Snacking, too, will help promote more salivation, which can help plaque and bacteria from adhering.

More health tips

Is your workout a waste of time?
5 ways to get brighter, whiter teeth
Getting fit at home

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