Many of us make New Year resolutions to improve our general health and well-being but often forget about our oral health. Seeing the New Year as an opportunity to make positive changes is a great way to start another 12 months around the sun. And although we’re all individuals and entitled to our own goals, every one of us benefits from having a healthy mouth and investing a little time and energy into our oral health.
In the same way that many health-related routines rely on repetition and frequency, oral health practices do as well. It’s the daily attention to our teeth and gums which makes all the difference in reducing the risk of developing painful and expensive dental emergencies down the track.
Regular dental check-ups, every 6-12 months, help to identify early problems before they become more complex, especially as we age. They are also a great way to support overall good health and keep us on track throughout the year. Book an appointment today and speak to your dentist about maintaining good oral health.
10 New Year resolution tips to improve your oral health
Arrange your bathroom and vanity so your toothbrush, toothpaste, and floss are in plain sight. Making it easy to care well for your teeth by stocking up on tooth cleaning supplies, means you’re less likely to leave brushing ‘until later’ if everything you need is close.
Brush your teeth at least twice each day with fluoridated toothpaste. Buy yourself a new toothbrush for the New Year and choose one with soft bristles and a small head. Brush your tongue as well, by using either your brush or a tongue scraper.
Floss in between your teeth at least once each day. A great time to do this is just before brushing before you go to bed. Be gentle as you guide the floss between your teeth and avoid ‘snapping’ the floss into place.
Make an appointment to see your dentist every 6 months. Rebook your next one before you leave and have peace of mindyou are already committing to your resolution 6 months in advance.
Make a decision to stop smoking or vaping. Each is damaging to oral and general health and the New Year is a great time to make changes.
Try to cut back on sweet drinks like soft drinks, cordial, energy drinks, and juice. These all contain sugar which increases the risk of tooth decay. Drink water instead, preferably fluoridated – check with your local Council.
Review your stress management habits and make positive changes. Many dentists are reporting that they’re seeing increased numbers of patients who are clenching and grinding their teeth because of stress. Custom-made mouthguards help to stop tooth damage from this unconscious habit.
Stop using your teeth as tools, especially if you’re in the habit of opening packets with your teeth or using your teeth to hold something when your hands are full. Each tooth is precious and when one is lost or damaged from an undue force, there’s a flow-on effect on the others as well.
Create a new habit of always rinsing your mouth with plain water after drinking tea and coffee. This will help to prevent your teeth from becoming stained. Speak with your dentist about teeth whitening options if you’d like a whiter smile.
Make a deal with yourself that you will stick with your new oral health regime. Like other habits, it can take a couple of weeks for new routines to become established.
Book an appointment with your dentist to discuss your oral health and start the New Year off with a plan to look after your mouth.