The Dentist's Guide to the Ultimate Oral Health Care Routine
Whilst we are all aware of the importance of good oral care, research shows that 26% of people don’t understand what they need to do achieve a healthy-looking smile*. With this in mind, Rapid White has attained expert advice from dentist David Cocker BSD (lond) LDS RCS (Eng) to help you perfect the best possible oral care routine, and ultimately achieve that dazzling smile.
Within this guide you will find information on:
- The benefits of a good oral care routine
- The best way to brush teeth
- Suggested oral care routine
- How to boycott bad breath
- Improving the whiteness of your teeth
The benefits of a good oral care routine
It’s not difficult to get yourself into a regular oral health routine, and the results certainly make it worth the effort. The benefits include:
- A sparkling smile which can increase confidence and self-esteem.
- Prevention of tooth decay.
- Controlling the onset of gum disease.
- Helping to prevent bad breath.
- Reduced chance of oral infections.
- Helping to lessen the likelihood of needing costly dental repair work.
Brush up on your brushing
The majority of people (94%) automatically brush their teeth as a matter of habit, however some simple changes will help ensure that you get the best out of your brushing.
- Brush Teeth twice a day, once in the morning and again before you go to bed.
- Use a fluoride toothpaste.
- Use a soft toothbrush to avoid excessive wear on your teeth.
- Spend two minutes brushing your teeth (both morning and night). Allocate a good 30 seconds on each quarter of the mouth (Top left, top right, bottom left and bottom right).
- Refrain from brushing teeth for two hours after eating or drinking anything acidic. Acid temporarily weakens the teeth, and brushing can damage the enamel when it is at its most vulnerable.
Perfect your oral care routine
There is more to an oral care routine than brushing alone, dentist David Cocker suggests supplementing brushing with the following measures:
- The toothbrush alone will remove about two thirds of the plaque, but it’s how good we are at removing the plaque that collects between the teeth that counts. This is where Dental Floss, Tooth Picks, Bottle Brushes, Water Picks etc come into their own.
- If you are worried about bad breath, use a tongue scraper to remove any excess plaque bacteria from the tongue.
- Use a fluoride mouthwash to rinse out the mouth and help prevent bad breath. It will also create a protective film over teeth, which will make them more resilient to acid attack.
And you can continue the care out of the bathroom…
- Chew sugar free gum for 20 minutes to stimulate the flow of saliva and accelerate the hardening of the enamel surface. **
- After consuming acidic food or drink eat some cheese, it will raise the plaque calcium levels and help harden the soften enamel.
- Cut down on smoking and be careful that you aren’t unknowingly staining your teeth with the foods that you are eating.
- Avoid sugary snacks and drinks between meals.
- Make regular trips to the dentist or dental hygienist to ensure that teeth are in tip top condition.
Boycotting bad breath
Bad breath can be an embarrassing condition, and a surprising amount of people visit their dentist for this complaint alone. Whilst we are all aware of bad breath, it is not always clear why it occurs and, more importantly, what can be done about it. David Cocker shares his advice:
Bad breath is usually caused by a buildup of plaque bacteria, which settles in hard to reach parts of the mouth (such as areas where gums have receded or deep crevices in the tongue) and becomes stagnant. The bacteria will then produce volatile sulphur compounds (VSC’s), which are the cause of bad breath.
Top Tips for combatting bad breath:
- Rinse your mouth with a mouthwash designed for destroying the odour molecules (VSC’s).
- Use a tongue scraper to help remove the plague bacteria that causes bad breath.
- Visit your dentist to check that there isn’t an underlying health issue that is responsible for the unpleasant odour.
Improve the whiteness of your teeth
Even with the most thorough oral care routine you may still find that you have areas of staining on your teeth. This is commonly caused by foods and drinks such as rich coloured sauces and coffee. This ‘at home device’ in particular has been proven to visibly whiten teeth with one use and remove up to 68% more stubborn plaque than brushing with an electric toothbrush alone***.
“Why does plaque removal equate to whiter teeth?” you may ask; David Cocker has the answer:
“If there is any soft plaque left on your teeth overnight it may dry-out and start to harden to form tartar. This leaves a rough surface that can encourage the build-up of stains from such things as tea, coffee, smoking, red wine etc., which will affect the whiteness of the teeth”.
There’s a whole lot to smile about!
By regularly following the above advice and getting yourself into a good oral health routine you will undoubtedly be keeping your teeth in great condition and ultimately helping improve their life span. Not only that, you can’t help but experience the emotional and aesthetic benefits that come hand in hand with a healthy-looking smile, which in itself is enough to have you grinning from ear to ear!
* Independent survey of 2,000 respondents conducted by OnePoll on behalf of Rapid White, February 2016
** Ref: Dawes & MacPherson, 1992
*** Statistics sourced from Laboratory Studies, Extrinsic Stain Removal 2015