Many of us dutifully brush our teeth a twice a day, visit the dentist a couple of times a year and there’s probably plenty of flossers reading this as well. That’s a pretty solid defence against the plaque and bacteria that like to frequent our mouths, but in order to take the fight to the cavity-causing enemy, here are a few additional tips that should keep your teeth healthy for years to come.
Tip #1: Your Diet Is the Most Important Factor in Teeth and Gum Health
This may be a surprise to some, but your choice of diet doesn’t just do potential harm to your teeth, it is also essential in keeping them nice and healthy.
Calcium-rich foods like low-fat dairy products, almonds and spinach are excellent choices, especially when combined with foods that are high in vitamin D, like soy, rice and fish.
Oranges and spinaches are high in vitamin A, which helps strengthen your teeth.
Meat and eggs are an excellent source of phosphorus, which helps strengthen the enamel on your teeth. Magnesium, which you can get from coconut water, bananas and spinach (among other things), performs a similar job.
While we all know what t not to eat, remember that any diet that has lots of starches (such as fries and breaded foods) and lots of sugar can quickly start a bacteria-feeding frenzy in your mouth. This will lead to plaque build-up, followed by tartar build-up, and our worst nightmare: cavities and gingivitis.
Tip #2: Saliva is Your Friend
Saliva assists in mouth cleanliness by clearing away the acid that attaches itself to our teeth. Dry mouths are much more prone to tooth decay, and since the most notable time when our teeth are dry is at night, making sure to brush before bed is crucial.
If you frequently suffer from dry mouth, for example if you’re a smoker, try chewing gum with Xylitol in it. Not only will it help stimulate saliva production, the Xylitol will also help fight tooth decay by keeping bacteria from accumulating on your teeth, changing the pH of your mouth so bacterial acids cannot errode your teeth, and helping the enamel of your teeth absorb minerals to keep them strong and cavity-free.
Tip #3: Coffee and Tea Are Excellent Cavity Fighters
And we should thank our lucky stars, because most people wouldn’t stop drinking them even if they caused cavities by the dozen. Tea introduces polyphenols to your mouth, which helps eliminate the plaque-forming kinds of bacteria. Coffee is also useful, since previous studies have proven that roasted coffee beans are natural antibiotics, which help prevent the formation of cavities.
Naturally Sweet Xylitol can prevent tooth decay by stopping acid attacks, reducing the growth of bacteria and decreasing the amount of plaque. Click here to explore how Xylitol can improve oral health.