As your trusted Silver Lake dentist, I care deeply about the health your teeth. I also know that I can only do so much to keep your smile strong for a lifetime; a big portion of the job comes from you, and how you care for your mouth at home. That means regular brushing, flossing and eating a healthy, balanced diet, too. And it’s with the latter in mind that I write this blog post, our first of the new year! Keep reading for some top nutrition guidelines in 2016 — for a healthier mouth this year, and many more to come.
Four key nutrition tips to increase your oral health
Keep these top tips in mind to help you and your loved ones enjoy healthier teeth and gums!
#1: Variety is important
You know a well-balanced, varied diet is a big part of maintaining your overall wellbeing, but did you know it’s also key to having a healthy mouth? That’s right — people who maintain diets that include fresh fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean protein and low-fat dairy sources enjoy healthier teeth and gums, too.
Oral Health Tip: Try adding one new healthy item to your grocery list every week. Foods like blueberries, nuts and whole wheat pasta are all good for healthy teeth!
#2: Sip on H2O
We like to remind our patients that a healthy mouth is also a hydrated mouth. That’s because when your mouth has plenty of fluids, it’s able to wash away bacteria and food particles before they turn into plaque and tartar. Make sure yours doesn’t run low on saliva by sipping water throughout the day.
Oral Health Tip: Invest in a water bottle and toss it (filled!) into your bag before you start your day. It’ll be a good reminder to stay hydrated throughout the day.
#3: Watch out for hidden sugar sources
When it comes to sugar, you already know the major tooth offenders: sodas, sugary gum and candy. But watch out for hidden sources, too — cereals, yogurt and fruit juices may be good for you in other ways, but they’re often so delectable because they’re filled with sugar.
Oral Health Tip: It’s now recommended that sugar should make up only 10 percent of our calories — so check the nutrition facts for sugar content, and rinse your mouth out with water after you do indulge.
#4: Pay attention to when you snack
It may be surprising, but it’s not only about what you eat — it’s also about when you eat it. The mouth doesn’t produce as much saliva during a small snack as it does for a full meal, meaning things may get left behind after that 3pm energy bar. That’s especially harmful when the snack is something that easily gets stuck to teeth, like dried fruit or granola.
Oral Health Tip: Try making your meals fuller to reduce the temptation to snack during the day. But if you can’t get by without frequent small meals, make it a point to brush your teeth more often.
Good oral hygiene includes regular visits to the dentist
Of course, every good oral care routine includes twice-annual dental cleanings and checkups. If it’s been more than six months since your last visit, why don’t you give us a call to schedule your appointment? Better yet, request your appointment online. We’re here to help Silver Lake, Topeka and all our neighbors achieve the very best oral health in 2016 — get started today!