Your healthy smile starts with these simple steps.

Are you doing everything you can to take care of your teeth at home? When you practice good oral hygiene, you can enjoy a beautiful smile while also protecting your oral health.

Try these 10 smart tips to make the most of your oral hygiene routine:

1. Keep floss on hand.

Flossing is a key part of any good oral hygiene routine. If you aren’t flossing regularly, make sure to purchase the best dental floss you can find as soon as you can to start implementing flossing into your routine. Your dentist can recommend the best dental floss for you as well.

In addition to flossing once each day, consider carrying floss in your purse, pocket, or bag wherever you go. When you get any food caught in between your teeth, using your floss to remove it then and there helps prevent tooth decay and provides instant relief. Keeping floss on-hand can serve as a visual reminder to floss as well.

2. Stick to straws for most drinks.

Aside from water and hot beverages that aren’t suitable for straws, you should stick to drinking through straws for most drinks. When acidic and sugary drinks come into contact with your teeth, they contribute to tooth decay and staining. Using a straw means the liquid bypasses your teeth, greatly reducing the direct impact. Just make sure you don’t let children run with a cup containing a straw (or any other cup).

Make sure to drink using a gulping motion rather than sipping to ensure that any drink only has minimal contact with your teeth. For the best results, you could consider cutting most non-water beverages out of your diet entirely.

3. Find snacks that don’t cause tooth decay.

Your diet has a significant impact on your oral health. You can improve your oral hygiene by carefully choosing snacks that won’t contribute to tooth decay or gum disease.

Avoiding overly sugary snacks is a great start. Anything particularly crumbly can pose problems as well, as bits of food get stuck in your teeth. Fruits and vegetables like apples, carrots, and celery, that have plenty of fiber and water in them, are great because they help clean away any bits left on your teeth.

4. Invest in a good electric toothbrush.

Going with a good electric toothbrush can help you achieve proper tooth brushing every time. The motion of an electric toothbrush head provides improved coverage and consistency when brushing. You’ll be able to remove bits of food and bacteria more effectively. You still need to make sure that you’re reaching every surface, though!

5. Try Xylitol gum.

If you’re partial to gum, you can improve your oral hygiene by choosing xylitol-sweetened gum. This alternative sweetener can help reduce tooth decay by inhibiting the growth of bacteria. It can be a much better choice than sugar-laden gum that provides a long-lasting source of sugar for bacteria.

6. Brush your teeth before breakfast.

Brushing your teeth twice each day is vital for proper oral hygiene, which leaves most people brushing once in the morning and once before bed. You might think that brushing after breakfast would help, but you should actually brush before! This removes bacteria before they get a chance to metabolize any food, delivering the best results.

7. Stay hydrated throughout the day.

Drinking water frequently helps remove bits of food from your teeth and manage bacteria levels. You can keep a glass of water on your nightstand to have a drink when you wake up. Carrying a water bottle with you throughout the day also makes it easy to drink frequently. Make sure to drink plenty of water during meals and with snacks, too.

8. Get plenty of calcium in your diet.

Your teeth need a steady supply of calcium to stay healthy and remineralize enamel. This is vital to prevent the onset of tooth decay. Eating a diet rich in calcium helps protect your teeth; you can choose from options such as dairy, dark leafy greens, and a wide range of beans and soy products.

9. Brush your tongue, too.

Do you brush your tongue when you brush your teeth? You should, as its large surface can hold a lot of bacteria. Gently brushing your tongue can reduce bacteria levels and help improve your breath as well. Many toothbrushes also feature special pads on the back of the head just for this purpose.

10. Keep up with routine appointments.

Maintaining oral hygiene also means keeping up with routine dental appointments. You should visit your dentist once every six months, not just when you have a toothache. The professional teeth cleaning they carry out removes plaque and tartar deposits that regular brushing can’t handle, preventing tooth decay and gum disease.

Find the preventive care you need in Bloomington, IL.

What you do at home is vital to maintain your oral health. However, you also need quality care from compassionate dentists in Bloomington, IL, for prevention and treatment of any dental issues.

Bloomington Modern Dentistry offers a comprehensive range of family dentistry treatments. Our friendly team provides high-quality, advanced dental care personalized to your needs. Schedule your next appointment today.