Consider Improving Your Oral Hygiene Habits in 2014
Why Oral Hygiene?
Did you know approximately four out of every five children living in the UAE are affected by tooth decay, yet it is a condition that is completely preventable with proper oral care?
Interestingly, many people don’t even know they have tooth decay, as early symptoms-a chalky white spot on the surface of the tooth, or a toothache-can be hard to detect. A recent survey on the oral hygiene habits of UAE residents found:
- Nearly half of residents don’t follow the recommended oral care routine of brushing their teeth twice each day-when they wake up and before they go to bed
- One in four individuals (28%) only brush their teeth once per day- in the morning
- One in ten residents have no set brushing routine
- Nearly half of residents only visit their dentist when in pain
How Do I Improve My Oral Health?
While brushing is extremely important and should be done twice a day, there are many other steps to a complete oral care routine. The following quick tips will only take a couple of minutes each day, but can significantly improve your oral health and your overall wellbeing in the New Year.
Consider your brushing technique: Place a soft-bristled tooth brush at a 45-degree angle to your gums, and gently move back and forth. Don’t forget to brush the inner surfaces of your teeth and also your tongue to keep your breath fresh.
Get the right tools: Be sure your toothbrush shape fits your mouth so you can easily reach all areas. It’s also important to replace your brush every three months
Floss your teeth daily: Flossing helps remove plaque that accumulates between your teeth, and is essential when it comes to preventing gum disease.
When you’re on-the-go and brushing isn’t possible, chew sugar-free gum for a clean, healthy mouth: Chewing sugar-free gum for just 20 minutes following meals and snacks has numerous oral care benefits; Research shows this can help reduce tooth decay and ultimately lead to healthier teeth and gums.
Drink plenty of water throughout the day: Water is full of oxygen, which prevents the bacteria that causes bad breath from forming in your mouth.
Visit your dentist regularly, even if you don’t feel any pain: Be sure to schedule dental check-ups twice per year as your dentist or hygienist can detect oral conditions at the early stages of development.
Quick Tips to Help You Form Healthy Habits </p>
According to Linda Sakr, a Professional Psychologist at Dubai Community Health Centre, healthy habits aren’t formed overnight, and just as old habits are hard to break, new habits can be challenging to form. Follow the below steps to help you achieve your oral care goals in the New Year.
Repetition is key. The more you do something, the more natural it becomes. To develop a proper oral care routine, no matter how busy you are, take a couple of minutes to brush your teeth every morning and every evening before you go to bed. During the day when you’re on the go, and brushing isn’t possible, remember to chew sugar-free gum for just 20 minutes following meals and snacks to help reduce tooth decay.
Learn the skills you lack. To form healthy habits, you must be armed with the right knowledge. Proper technique for brushing and flossing is essential.
Share your goals. If you talk about your goals with friends or family members, you’re more likely to achieve them. Get your whole family on board with your resolution to improve oral care, and then encourage each other to keep to a proper daily routine of brushing, flossing, chewing sugar-free gum, and regular dental visits.