For anyone out there who is over 40 years old, you know your teeth may not be as perfect as they used to be. Normal wear over the years is expected, but it’s not too late to improve your oral health and keep your teeth in great shape for years to come.
Part of this is learning what issues to watch out for and knowing the best proper habits for dental care. Once you know these, your teeth will reward you with many more faithful years of service. Not only this, but your overall health will benefit from your oral health too.
So, here are three important areas to keep in mind for the road ahead:
This is obviously one of the hardest parts to keeping your mouth healthy. After all, who doesn’t want some candy every now and then? The key with sweets and other foods detrimental to your dental care is limiting them as much as possible. Make sure you retain balance in what you eat and know how it affects your health.
Choose My Plate is an excellent resource for finding nutrition tips, tricks, and ways to ensure you are maintaining a healthy diet.
- Fruits and vegetables – These should account for half of your diet each day.
- Grains – At least half of the grains you eat should be whole grains, such as oatmeal, whole wheat bread and brown rice.
- Dairy – Your best options are low-fat or fat-free dairy foods.
- Lean proteins – Lean protein choices, such as lean beef, skinless poultry and fish are preferred to fatty ones. Varying your protein choices to include eggs, beans, peas and legumes, is extremely beneficial.
- Seafood – Eat at least 8 oz. of seafood per week.
Follow this guide and you will find that a healthy mouth and body come easily.
Pairing optimal nutrition with proper habits for cleaning your teeth is truly the key to retaining a healthy mouth.
As you may already know, brushing and flossing are crucial to proper dental habits. What it comes down to, however, is quantity and quality.
Quantity – It’s recommended you brush at least twice per day for a minimum of two minutes and floss at least once per day. The best way to keep your teeth sparkling is to brush after every meal. That way, you will have fresh breath as well for whoever you encounter. An ADA-recommended fluoride toothpaste can do wonders for your teeth as well.
Quality – How long has it been since you’ve changed toothbrushes? The toothbrush you use should not have frayed bristles. This can reduce the its effectiveness and how clean your teeth are getting. If you find yourself in this situation, do the right thing for your teeth and invest in a new toothbrush. Also look into electric toothbrushes, such as Phillips Sonicare.
Areas of Concern
Some of the biggest concerns for people in this age range are:
- Gum Disease – Gum disease can affect you without any warning signs, so its extremely important to receive regular checkups from Dr. Isaacson. The disease begins with gingivitis, which is the only reversible stage. After that, if left untreated, it can turn in to periodontitis, which is far more destructive. The best defense against the disease is keeping up good oral hygiene at home.
- Missing Teeth – The average adult between the ages of 20 and 64 has three or more decayed or missing teeth. If you are in this category, we have many options available if you’d like to enhance your smile, as well as your ability to chew, speak and eat.
- Sensitivity – If hot or cold foods trigger sensitivity in your teeth, it could be due to a number of reasons, including cavities, fractured teeth, gum disease, worn tooth enamel. However, there’s hope – we can treat sensitive teeth so you don’t have to wince any longer.
- Oral Cancer – If you are experiencing any problems you have when chewing, swallowing, speaking or moving your tongue or jaw, it could be a sign of oral cancer, which begins as a small red or white spot anywhere in your mouth.
According to the ADA, some other possible signs include:
- Sores that bleed easily or do not heal
- A thick or hard spot or lump
- A roughened or crusted area
- Numbness, pain or tenderness
- A change in the way your teeth fit together when you bite down.
As long as you know what to watch out for and maintain regular dental checkups, you should be in the clear.
Day In, Day Out
In review, by maintaining a healthy diet, using proper dental care habits, and knowing what to watch out for day in and day out will give you the best chance at a healthy mouth for years to come.
If you have any questions regarding any aspect of your oral health, we are always here to help. Call us today to schedule your appointment or ask any questions.
Bjorklund Dental Designs is proud to be your family dentist in Wayzata, and we look out for family members of all ages, not just children. Regardless of your age, we plan on taking care of you the best we can.