Santa Claus knows who’s been naughty and nice, and he also knows who’s practicing good oral hygiene and who could do better. If you want to get ready for those kisses under the mistletoe, check out some great pro tips to keep your mouth, teeth, and gums healthy and looking great this holiday season. Here are some suggestions for optimal oral hygiene.

santa holding a toothbrush against a yellow background

See Your Dentist

If you’re reading this blog, you’ve already taken the first step to getting help with preventative care for your mouth. The next step is to make your twice-yearly dental exam and cleaning appointments. Your Burkburnett general dentist will tell you that those who act proactively to care for their teeth and gums will have fewer dental problems than those who wait until the problems arise to see their dentist.

Your dentist will perform a thorough evaluation, including x-rays, and your dental hygienist will clean your teeth. Using the most advanced dental technology available, you’ll even be screened for oral cancer. Seeing your dentist at least twice a year will allow the dentist to discover problems in their early stages—hopefully preventing costly and time-consuming appointments in the future.

Brushing and Flossing Tips

Many people think they take good care of their teeth, but there’s almost always room for improvement. These tips will ensure proper care of your teeth and gums at home:

  • Brush and floss twice a day in two-minute intervals
  • Be sure to brush and floss at bedtime
  • Brush properly by moving the toothbrush in gentle, circular motions to remove plaque
  • Brush your tongue every time you brush your teeth; sometimes, the tongue gets neglected, allowing bacteria to grow
  • Use a fluoride toothpaste that is nonabrasive
  • Ask your Burkburnett general dentist about mouthwash
  • Flossing is as important as brushing; proper flossing removes food particles, stimulates the gums, reduces plaque, and helps reduce inflammation

Food and Drinks to Avoid

There are certain foods and drinks that may interfere with the health and appearance of your teeth and gums.

  • Eat lots of crunchy fruit and vegetables
  • Limit or avoid sugary drinks and foods, especially soda; sugar converts into acid in the mouth and will erode your tooth enamel causing cavities
  • Drink more water, especially with meals, to wash out some of the negative effects of sugary, acidic foods and beverages.

Habits to Avoid

Chewing on objects like pens and pencils can damage teeth. Smoking cigarettes and excessive intake of coffee and tea should be avoided to keep teeth from staining. Be careful when chewing hard candy and other hard foods, as this can chip or crack your teeth.

Oral Hygiene’s Impact on the Rest of the Body

Your mouth will not be the only area of your body to benefit from excellent oral hygiene. The following conditions have been linked to poor oral health:

  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Stroke
  • Pneumonia
  • Certain pregnancy complications

Signs of Poor Oral Hygiene

It’s never too late to start practicing good oral hygiene. If you feel you’ve waited too long to care for your teeth and gums, just ask your Burkburnett, Texas, general dentist what you can do to rectify the situation. The following issues may indicate a history of poor oral hygiene:

  • Bad breath
  • Tooth decay
  • Bleeding, inflamed gums
  • Mouth sores
  • Swelling or pain in the jaw
  • Toothache
  • Loose teeth
  • Gum recession

If you have any of the above conditions, please call a general dentist in Burkburnett, TX, today to schedule an exam and cleaning.

Learn More Pro Tips for Excellent Oral Health

With the holiday season upon us, please treat yourself to a thorough evaluation by a Burkburnett, Texas, general dentist by calling (940) 569-4901. If you are having gum problems or are suffering from a toothache, it’s time to get help from an experienced, skillful dentist like Dr. Kyle Clark at Burkburnett Family Dental. If it’s time for you or your family to get a check-up, please call or fill out our online contact form. One of our amazing dental team members will reach out to answer your questions or schedule a new patient evaluation.