It can be hard to think about picking up new health habits when you’re caught up in your hectic daily routine. But if the COVID-19 quarantine has you spending more time in your house, it may be easier to reevaluate the way you’re taking care of your teeth and gums. The following 4 tips from your endodontist in Concord will go a long way towards keeping your mouth clean during a time when you need to pay extra close attention to your overall health.
1. Brush After Every Meal
You’ve often heard that you should brush after every meal, but chances are that lunch has always been the exception. Many people simply don’t think to bring their toothbrushes to the office or to restaurants. But now that you’re working and probably eating most of your meals at home, now’s a good time to make a habit of brushing more often. (Don’t forget to wait about 15 minutes before brushing if your meal included anything acidic; you don’t want to damage your enamel while it’s in a softened state.)
2. Take the Time to Use Mouthwash
Even if you brush for a full two minutes and floss thoroughly between all of your teeth, there might still be a few spaces in your mouth that you weren’t able to reach. Even the smallest amount of debris left behind can irritate the gums and contribute to oral health issues. For the most thorough clean, you should always take the time to use mouthwash during your oral hygiene routine. Look for a product that contains fluoride to prevent decay as well as ingredients that kill bacteria (such as cetylpyridinium chloride).
3. Take Care of Your Brush
Now is a perfect time to think about the way you treat your toothbrush. For one thing, you shouldn’t place it in a drawer or cover the head after rinsing the bristles; doing so could inadvertently encourage bacteria to breed. Let the brush air dry out in the open instead. Avoid sharing your brushes with anyone (including members of your own family), and don’t forget to trade them out every three or four months.
4. Stop Snacking at Night
It may be tempting to indulge in a midnight snack every once in a while, but stop to think about the impact it might have on your smile. If you eat something and then go to bed without brushing, food particles and sugar will be allowed to rest on your teeth for too long, and your risk of cavities will rise.
Remember that your endodontist in Concord remains open for emergency care even during the COVID-19 pandemic, so you’ll have someone you can turn to should your teeth become infected. That said, though, following the above steps and improving your overall awareness of your oral health should help you prevent such infections from occurring in the first place.
About the Author
Dr. Gregory C. Gell currently runs his own clinic, Afton Endodontics, to bring Concord high quality, reliable root canal treatments. He is a Diplomate of the American Board of Endodontics, and he has served as an adjunct clinical professor teaching both undergraduate- and graduate-level endodontics. If you have a toothache or other concerns about your oral health and hygiene, get in touch with Dr. Gell through his website or by calling (704) 784-4625.