October is national dental hygiene month – Keep your smile shiny and bright!

By Date posted: Last updated: October 15, 2022
national dental hygiene month

While anytime is a good time to pay attention to your oral hygiene, October is designated as Dental Hygiene Month; a time to raise awareness about the importance of oral hygiene, also to applaud the work done by dental hygienists in order to support not just oral but overall health of millions of people.

Why is National Dental Hygiene Month important?

The foremost reason why there is the need for a National Dental Hygiene month is that it encourages oral health & keeps you away from a whole lot of diseases. Besides it also gives dental hygienists their due. After all, they work extremely hard to keep us healthy.

How can we participate in national dental hygiene month?

This National Dental Hygiene Month you need to sit down to evaluate your current oral hygiene routine and find ways to improve it! The lack of proper dental hygiene can lead not just to tooth decay and gum disease, but also to a wide variety of general health issues.

National Dental Hygiene Month Routine

This National Dental Hygiene Month, here is a reminder of the routines that you need to focus on to keep your smile shiny and bright:

#1. Brushing

It is common knowledge that we need to brush our teeth twice a day. While we may follow this advice, its efficacy also depends upon the technique we follow. Here is a quick overview of the right brushing technique:

  • Hold your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle to your gums.
  • Ensure that you make gentle strokes to clean each tooth.
  • Make sure that you address all tooth surfaces.
  • When it comes to cleaning the inner surface of the front teeth, keeping the brush in a vertical position & making up & down strokes, is prudent.
  • Ensure you do not forget to clean your tongue as well.
  • While making the choice of the right toothbrush is important, what is also important is to ensure that your toothpaste is equipped with fluoride. It goes a long way in making the tooth enamel stronger & ensures that it does not suffer from acid damage. In fact, even areas that show acid damage can be re-mineralized and early-stage acid damage reversed.

#2. Flossing

Reaching out to tooth surfaces that your brush cannot reach is possible by way of flossing. It ensures that no food particles or plaque are trapped between your teeth. As for the technique associated with flossing, it is recommended that you curve the floss around the side of each tooth and ensure that you have the floss curved to the right & then to the left as you carry out an up-and-down pass. While it is fine to move the floss a little below the gum line, ensure that you do not go too far.

It is important to remember that if you haven’t been flossing regularly, your gums are likely to bleed for the first week or two. This is on account of the plaque that may be deposited on the gum line. However, if the bleeding continues, a visit to the dentist will be in order.

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#3. Rinsing

Now, this is one activity that has a huge role to play in oral health but is often disregarded. It is important to rinse the mouth after each meal so that any food particles can be removed. The use of an anti-microbial mouthwash can go a long way in fighting bad breath as well as gum disease.

#4. Sugarless Gum

It is prudent to chew sugarless gum after a meal. What it does is it helps generate saliva, which helps fight tooth decay. In fact, chewing sugarless gum can help you with fighting cavities, plaque and more.

#5. Drink enough water

Drinking plenty of water helps with the following:

  • It cleans your mouth and removes any food particles.
  • Ensures there is enough saliva that is produced & dry mouth doesn’t develop.
  • Additionally, the production of saliva keeps gums hydrated.

#6. Kick those unhealthy habits

National Dental Hygiene month is a great time to say goodbye to unhealthy habits such as smoking. Not only does it stain your teeth, but it can also, among other health issues, lead to cancer.

#7. Regular visits to the dentist

Ensure that you make regular visits to a dentist, a habit. These visits ensure that any issues are caught early. Besides regular dental visits can ensure that dental cleanings take place timely & that accumulation of plaque and tartar does not progress to cause bone disease. Typically, it is recommended that you visit your dentist at least twice a year, unless of course if you have any dental conditions, in which case the dentist will recommend a bespoke plan for you. Regular visits to the dentist also ensure that you are screened for diseases such as oral cancer. Early diagnosis & treatment can go a long way in stemming its progress.

To sum up

This National Dental Hygiene Month do sit down to evaluate your current oral hygiene routine and find ways to improve it! The lack of proper dental hygiene can lead not just to tooth decay & gum disease, but also to a wide variety of general health issues.

This October when you visit your dental hygienist, a word of appreciation will go a long way in telling them of the good work they are doing in keeping everyone healthy. If you are from Pleasanton, San Jose, Livermore, or nearby areas then you can reach out to Dr. Sharda Patel who provides general dentistry services and cosmetic dentistry services to make your smile bright and to improve your overall health!