It goes without saying that this has been one of the most difficult (and unexpected) years we’ve ever experienced. From a worldwide epidemic to inclement weather and everything in between, we all deserve to be happy as the year 2021 comes to a conclusion. And as orthodontists, you know that nothing makes us happier than taking care of our patients’ teeth! There is no better way to start the new year than by renewing your dedication to your dental health, according to the doctors at the Texas Association of Orthodontists.
As we approach the end of the year and the start of 2022, here are our favorite resolutions for the new year with a happy, healthy, and new grin, as well as recommendations on how to keep them!
- Visit Your General Dentist Twice a Year
Have you been to the dentist twice in the last year? If not, don’t worry, you’re not alone. Only 52 percent of adults, according to the American Dental Association (ADA), visit their dentist once every six months, which is the ADA’s recommendation for most healthy adults. In fact, a whopping 21% had not seen their dentist in several years!
While there is no one-size-fits-all approach to dentistry, frequent dental visits are one of the greatest strategies to ensure long-term oral health. During these appointments, your dentist can analyze, diagnose, and treat current oral health problems, as well as prevent new ones from arising. Routine check-ups and cleanings are about more than just shining your beautiful whites; they are also about preparing you for improved health in general. If you have a habit of forgetting your dental visits, try scheduling appointments six months apart so that you always have something scheduled.
- Floss Every Day
Maybe you tell your dentist or orthodontist that you floss daily, but are you truly flossing your teeth every day? Flossing is one of those necessary but inconvenient tasks that no one truly enjoys. However, just as the benefits of flossing are substantial, so are the consequences of not flossing.
Food debris and bacteria love to lurk in hard-to-reach spots in your mouth that brushing alone cannot reach. When those particles have a chance to settle in all those nooks and crannies, they cause a damaging buildup of plaque and put you at risk for tooth decay. Flossing allows you to get into those little places and clear out the muck, lowering your risk of periodontal disease and keeping your smile as healthy as possible. So, as inconvenient as flossing may be, trust your dentist when they say it’s definitely worth it.
- Stick to Smile-Friendly Foods
For many people, the start of a new year is the ideal time to start getting into healthier routines, such as exercising more frequently or eating a healthier diet. We’re all for it, especially since good eating may have a significant impact on your teeth. Your nutrition and dental health are, in fact, inextricably related. Because what you eat has a direct impact on the health of your smile, it’s critical to eat tooth-healthy foods and avoid items that can cause long-term damage.
Unsurprisingly, foods that are healthy for your teeth are also good for your general health – and vice versa. Sugary and acidic meals (such as sodas, candy, and fruity drinks) contribute to tooth decay and gum disease, and they are generally unhealthy. Fortunately, by avoiding these meals and beverages, you can avoid difficulties in the first place. Instead, eat healthy foods including fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean protein sources. Healthy teeth, healthy body, healthy you.
- Drink Lots of Water
We all know that water is an essential component of any healthy lifestyle, but did you know that drinking water is also extremely beneficial to your teeth? Fluoride is added to our water supply throughout most of Texas. Fluoride is known as “nature’s cavity fighter” since it helps to strengthen your teeth and prevent tooth decay. Water also washes away food particles after eating, which reduces plaque and bacteria buildup, eliminates foul breath, and, ultimately, lowers your risk of periodontal disease.
Finally, bacteria grow when your mouth becomes too dry or you don’t generate enough saliva. Drinking water helps to avoid dry mouth by naturally reducing bacteria production and boosting overall oral health. So, if you want to maintain your teeth healthy in the new year, drink the recommended 10 to 16 cups of water every day!
- Book a Consultation with an Orthodontic Specialist!
Have you been thinking about getting your teeth straightened for a while? Are you concerned that it will take too long or cost too much money? Do you believe that teeth straightening is purely cosmetic? You’re not alone: many people put off orthodontic treatment for a variety of reasons, but as the new year approaches, we want you to know that your new ideal smile is within reach.
At Texas Association of Orthodontists, we believe that everyone deserves a beautiful, straight smile. And orthodontic treatment can not only give you the straight smile you’ve always wanted, but it can also improve your general health and self-confidence.
As the cliché goes, a new year means a new you. If you’ve been thinking about getting your teeth straightened, make 2022 the year you finally invest in your new smile. Visit our doctor search page to find an orthodontic specialist near you. https://www.texasortho.org/listings/