Preventive care is a trending phrase in the world of health care. While it’s easy to see how preventive care like diet and exercise help things such as heart disease, it’s a little harder to see how your preventive care affects dental health. The answer is simpler than you think, and there’s a lot you can do to keep your smile in top shape.
What is the Goal of Preventive Dentistry?
Although most people think of fillings and root canals in conjunction with a trip to their dentist, none of those qualify as preventative care. Rather than just caring for damage to your teeth, your doctor can actually help keep these issues from ever developing. This is preventive care.
Preventive care covers a lot of routine dental procedures. No matter your reason for visiting your dentist, you’ll probably receive a basic cleaning. This thorough scrub may not feel pleasant, but it’s one of the best ways to prevent long term issues like cavities and enamel weakening. Visiting your dentist for a simple inspection can serve as preventive care. These trips give your dentist a chance to inspect your teeth for potential problems that specific habits and treatments can halt or prevent. These problems may include gum disease, developing pressure from wisdom teeth, and other common ailments. With the right preventive care, you can stop a lot of the worst dental problems from ever developing, such as cracked and worn teeth.
What are Ways You Can Practice Preventive Care?
Preventive care doesn’t end when you leave your dentist’s office. You probably already practice basic preventive care by brushing your teeth twice a day. However, there’s always something you can add to your regimen to help improve your dental health.
Although just about everyone knows they’re supposed to, relatively few people floss regularly. This simple daily practice makes a world of difference for your gums and teeth. Make sure you’re flossing the correct way. You should pull the floss to bend around the sides of each tooth. By flossing this way, you target a wider part of your gums and prevent plaque from building up along the front and back of a tooth’s gum line. If you aren’t sure you’re flossing the correct way, ask your dentist for some tips the next time you visit for a cleaning.
Preventive care also extends to your diet. Everybody eats dessert from time to time, but a high sugar diet is incredibly bad for your dental health. The acid in popular beverages like soda and coffee also speeds up the erosion of your teeth. Eating well isn’t just about knowing which foods to avoid. It’s also about getting the right nutrients. If you are not getting the vitamins and minerals you need from your diet, your teeth and gums will suffer. After all, they’re a living part of your body.
Keeping your mouth healthy is a key step in keeping your entire body healthy. Protecting your teeth through preventive care today can slow, stop, or even reverse common dental health issues. You don’t have to wait for a trip to the dentist to get started.