Oral health is about more than just a beautiful smile, it can actually have a huge impact on your overall health! A healthy mouth allows you to speak, eat, and drink. Poor oral health has also been linked to diabetes, heart disease, stroke, respiratory illness, as well as preterm and low birth weight babies.
The first step to a healthy mouth is to practice good oral hygiene that includes regular brushing and flossing. Click here to read the Canadian Dental Association’s tips to ensure you are brushing and flossing effectively.
The second step to a healthy mouth is to ensure you are visiting your dentist regularly for cleaning and check-ups. Dentists and dental hygienists are experts at ensuring your teeth (and mouth) are clean and healthy!
On top of good oral hygiene and regular dental visits, we also wanted to provide you with some additional strategies to help keep your mouth healthy. Here are some of our top tips:
1. Limit sugary food and drinks.
Cavity-causing bacteria love to consume sugars and then release acidic compounds, which can lead to tooth decay. Limit sugary drinks such as juice, pop, and sugar-sweetened coffee and tea. If you are having a high-sugar drink, try to drink it in one sitting rather than sipping on it throughout the day. You can also use a reusable straw to avoid direct contact with your teeth! If you are having high-sugar foods such as sticky sweets, try to pair them with a meal and be sure to brush and floss your teeth well afterwards.
2. Avoid grazing throughout the day.
While regular meals and snacks are important for your overall health, try to avoid having bites and sips frequently throughout the day as this greatly increases the amount of time your teeth are in contact with potential cavity-causing sugar. Eating and drinking (anything but water) >6 times per day increases your risk of developing dental cavities! Instead, focus on having regular meals and snacks that honour your hunger cues and enjoy plain water between.
3. Stay hydrated.
Dry mouth can increase your risk for dental cavities and oral infections, as well as cause discomfort, pain, and difficulty chewing/swallowing. One of the simplest ways to prevent dry mouth is to ensure you are adequately hydrated. Enjoy plain water with meals and snacks, as well as throughout the day to help keep you hydrated. If you’re using bottled water, consider switching to tap water. Tap water is not only budget-friendly, but most developed count