Dental health is becoming a huge focus as a pivotal part of overall health and mortality rates. It is not simply a functional or cosmetic component of our physical well being, although those are indeed part of the ideal goal of great dental health.
Dental and gum health profile impacts several facets of health
Research is proving that the health of your gums and teeth are overall predictors for several other diseases and health issues. It’s not as simple as visiting the dentist every six months to a year any more.
There are many other ways you need to look after your own dental health in between these wellness visits that will determine not only your dental and gum health over the years, but also prolong the life and health of your teeth so you can keep them in top condition into advanced age.
Floss – preferably with a water flosser
Don’t listen to the latest noise about flossing not being important. There are legions of people who have seen how proper, effective flossing improves and even reverses many tooth and gum issues. Flossing is extremely important to maintain not only dental health, but also gum health.
The bacteria that occurs when we leave bits of food between our teeth is very destructive to our gums. Not to mention, it can be incredibly uncomfortable since it creates pressure on the surrounding tissues, and may even become slightly infected if bacteria begins to grow from the decay.
Flossing with traditional string style floss really only gets the job done to a certain point. Many of us, especially with age, begin to get pockets in our gums in the back of the mouth when the food can get lodged and become painful, and string floss will not get that out.
This is where a water flosser comes in. It is a tool that literally blasts a stream of water into the areas between the teeth. It does a very thorough and effective job at getting particles out that otherwise are difficult to remove with traditional floss. This means a lot less bacteria growth, which in turn prevents tooth decay, gum disease and overall dental and gum deterioration.
Choice of toothpaste – skip the sulfates
Your choice of toothpaste is important. Toothpaste that lathers up a lot is not a good choice, because it means it most likely contains the corrosive lathering agent SLS, or SLES (from the sulfate family). Using this type of toothpaste twice a day erodes the enamel. There are plenty of more natural toothpaste and tooth cleaning options out there that won’t erode the enamel.
Go gentle when brushing
It is also of vital importance to not brush your teeth too vigorously. This can be a difficult habit to unlearn, but any dentist will tell you it is one of the leading reasons so many people have thin enamel. You only need to press with the gentlest touch to get your teeth clean.
If you think you have thinning enamel, it is critical to find an enamel-protective or rebuilding toothpaste AND to make sure you are using it properly by using gentle pressure on your tooth brush when brushing.
Limit sugars and highly acidic foods
Limiting your processed sugars and high acidity drinks like soda is also going to help prevent tooth deterioration. Excess sugar consumption is definitively linked with cavities and gum disease. Sugar promotes bacterial growth, which fuels the breakdown of the hard materials that form the tooth, but it also contributes to gum disease and inflammation.
Try to avoid high acid or corrosive and high sugar foods and drinks as much as possible. If you partake in any of these, do a swish and gargle with warm water until you have a chance to brush your teeth to help minimize the corrosive damage. This brings us to our last important practice for dental and gum health.
If you’ve been following the natural health arena for any amount of time, you’ve no doubt heard of this fairly new trend. It’s been around forever, but most recently gained traction again. Oil pulling is simply swishing oil, usually organic coconut oil, around in the mouth for 15-20 minutes. Why oil?
Oil helps to “pull” the particle and bits of food, as well as any bacteria, out of the hardest to reach areas of the teeth and gums. Since oil “seeps” into these difficult to reach places like no other liquid can, it really acts as a great magnet to get all the excess bacteria out. It also may help contribute to the strength and whiteness of your teeth – an added bonus to the removal of decay-promoting bacteria and food particles.
Danna Norek is the founder of Aura Sensory® effective natural skin and hair care products. You can find them online at AuraSensory.com, or in her Etsy (Etsy.com) store.
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