As the new year approaches, many of us embark on a journey of self-improvement. While fitness goals and healthy eating habits often top the list, one aspect of our well-being that deserves equal attention is our dental health. A fresh year is the perfect time to make resolutions that promote a brighter, healthier smile, which will benefit your overall health and confidence. Here are some dental health resolutions to consider as you step into 2024.
Brush Twice a Day, Every Day
Let’s start with the basics. If you’re not already brushing your teeth twice a day, make it a firm resolution. Consistent brushing is your first line of defence against cavities, gum disease, and bad breath. Try to make it the first thing you do in the morning and the last thing you do before going to sleep – that way, it becomes a natural part of your morning and evening routines. Don’t rush through it! Be sure to take your time to thoroughly clean all surfaces of your teeth. Half hearted brushing can sometimes be as bad as not brushing at all.
Floss Before Brushing
A common misconception that we, as dentists, often see is that people believe they should floss after brushing their teeth. In actuality, you should floss before brushing, as it’s much more effective. Food build up between the teeth can often act as a plug, meaning the fluoride can’t travel between the gaps in the teeth. Flossing first removes those food particles and makes it easier for your toothbrush to reach all surfaces.
Attend Your Check-Ups
An easy win – be sure to attend your check-ups. It’s easy to cast aside a check-up when you’re not experiencing any pressing issues, however, your dentist and hygienist will be able to monitor the condition of your teeth and gums more closely, and spot the signs of any imminent problems that could occur.
Watch Your Diet
Kill two birds with one stone. Certain foods and beverages, like red wine and sugary snacks, aren’t kind to the waistline and they’re also known to stain your teeth and contribute to decay. Try to cut back on these items or rinse your mouth with water after consuming them. For the long term, incorporate more teeth-friendly foods into your diet, such as crunchy fruits, water and vegetables.
Drink More Water
Water is not only essential for overall health but is also beneficial for your teeth. Drinking water helps wash away food particles and bacteria, reducing the risk of cavities. So, make it a habit to keep a water bottle handy.
Avoid Harmful Habits
Common New Year’s resolutions include quitting smoking and drinking less alcohol – both of which are beneficial for your dental health as well as your overall health. Smokers face an increased risk of mouth cancers, tooth loss, gum disease and decay, whilst alcohol can cause discolouration and enamel erosion. Packing in these harmful habits will prevent any further damage taking place.
Large amounts of stress can cause teeth grinding, also known as bruxism, which can erode your teeth over time and cause damage to the teeth and jaw. Try to incorporate stress-reduction techniques into your daily routine, such as meditation, yoga, exercise or deep breathing exercises.
Book an appointment
New year’s resolutions for your dental health can significantly impact your overall well-being, and by incorporating these changes into your daily life, you’ll be well on your way to a healthier, happier smile in the coming year. Get an early start on your New Year’s resolutions by booking a consultation with one of our friendly dentists.